Preparing for your appointment

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Cervicitis is most often discovered incidentally during a routine pelvic exam and Pap test and may not require treatment. If, however, you experience unusual vaginal symptoms that lead you to schedule an appointment, you'll most likely see a gynecologist, family doctor or other health care provider.

Because appointments can be brief, and because there's often a lot of ground to cover, it's a good idea to be well prepared for your appointment. Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.

What you can do

So that your doctor can observe and evaluate any vaginal discharge you have, avoid using tampons and don't douche before your appointment.

Also make a list of all medications or supplements you're taking or any allergies you have. Write down questions to ask your doctor. Some basic questions include:

  • Can I do anything to prevent this condition?
  • What signs and symptoms should I watch out for?
  • Do I need to take medicine?
  • Are there any special instructions for taking the medicine?
  • Are there any over-the-counter products that will treat my condition?
  • Does my partner also need to be tested or treated?
  • What should I do if my symptoms return after treatment?

In addition to the questions that you've prepared to ask your doctor, don't hesitate to ask questions during your appointment if you think of something else.

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor will likely perform a physical exam that may include a pelvic exam and Pap test. He or she may collect a fluid specimen from your vagina or cervix to send for testing.

Your doctor may also ask you a number of questions about your condition, such as:

  • What vaginal symptoms are you experiencing?
  • Do you notice a strong vaginal odor?
  • Are you experiencing any urinary problems, such as pain during urination?
  • How long have you had your symptoms?
  • Are you sexually active?
  • Have you or your partner ever had a sexually transmitted infection?
  • Do you experience pain or bleeding during intercourse?
  • Do you have abdominal pain? Where, exactly?
  • Do you douche or use any feminine hygiene products?
  • Are you pregnant?
  • Have you tried any over-the-counter products to treat your symptoms?
  • What medications or vitamin supplements do you take?
Nov. 22, 2011