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Health, an Avera eNewsletter that provides
you with information to help you live a healthy
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the Most Out of Your Doctor's Visits
Giving you the best diagnosis and treatment
for your health is a goal of Avera health care
providers. Knowing as much as possible about
your symptoms, medical history and health habits
can help Avera health care providers to have you
feeling better sooner.Write down questions
ahead of time. Valid concerns can be
forgotten during an appointment. If it helps you
remember, make a list of symptoms you've been
having and the questions you'd like to ask your
Here are some tips
for making the most out of your next doctor's
Don't be shy.
Tell your doctor what medicines or drugs
you are on. Be honest about your eating habits
and alcohol use. This could affect your
diagnosis, prescriptions or your doctor's
instructions. Also, don't wait until the end of
an appointment to bring up serious concerns
about your health that you may find difficult to
discuss. It's best to address these concerns
Ask a lot of
questions. If you don't understand your
doctor's instructions, ask for clarification.
Don't be afraid to ask more questions about your
symptoms, diagnosis, prescription or anything
else your doctor tells you.
Bring a trusted friend
or family member. If you are nervous
about your appointment, it might be helpful to
have another person to listen to the doctor's
instructions or take notes.
Remember: your health
is important. When you go for your
doctor's appointments, do you ask as many
questions as you would if the appointment were
for your children, husband or other loved ones?
Be sure not to downplay your symptoms.
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Happens After an Abnormal Test Result
Regular gynecological exams are important for
your reproductive and pelvic health. They can
detect changes to your body that may require
follow-up care. If results of your pap smear
come back as abnormal, what's the next
During a Pap test, your health care
provider takes a sampling of cells from your
cervix. Those cells are sent to a lab to be
examined. If the results show abnormalities in
the cells, your health care provider will
schedule a follow-up exam that depends on your
medical history. One follow-up exam a doctor
might recommend is a colposcopy, which is a
procedure that further examines abnormal
tissues. For minor abnormalities in the initial
Pap smear, your health care provider might
recommend another pap smear in six months.
How often you need to have a Pap test
depends on several factors, including your age
and past Pap smear results. Your doctor can
recommend the frequency of your exams depending
on your medical history.
To learn more
about the test and results, click
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