A cervix examination can be an important part of a woman’s care during pregnancy. The cervix is at risk for a number of adverse conditions and injuries, including polyps, infection, cancer and more. Thus, examining the cervix is important during the course of a pregnancy. Failure to do so may be considered improper care, and may allow for pursuit of an Ohio medical malpractice claim if injuries occur.
How Cervix Examination is Done
Examining the cervix is usually done in tandem with examination of other areas, too, such as the pelvis, the ovaries, the vulva and more.
Gynecological exams will typically go something like this:
- The patient will be asked to remove her clothing and lay on her back on top of an examination table. She will need to place her feet in stirrups, usually attached to the table itself.
- The doctor may first examine the vulva and feel the lower stomach and pelvic area for any abnormalities or painful areas.
- Then, the doctor will lubricate a speculum tool and insert it into the vagina. It may then be gently opened, so that the cervix can be easily viewed and examined.
- Next, the doctor will check the cervix. The physician may note its color, shape and symmetry, and look for any cysts, lumps, polyps or other abnormalities.
- If performing a full pap smear, the doctor may take a small sample of cells from the cervix walls when examining the cervix. These will be tested for infection and other conditions.
- Once the doctor removes the speculum tool, a manual cervical examination may be performed, as well. To do this, the doctor will insert two fingers into the vagina, while keeping one hand on top of the pelvis. The physician will then manually examine the patient to feel for lumps, abnormal growths or changes in size or shape.
Not Examining the Cervix: What It Could Mean for an Ohio Medical Malpractice Claim
If the cervix is not properly examined during pregnancy, it may lead to worsening of medical conditions affecting it such as cervical cancer, polyps, and more. In the event a doctor fails to perform an adequate exam and a cervical issue goes untreated, women may contact an attorney at Mellino Robenalt LLC. There may be grounds for an Ohio medical malpractice claim if proper cervix examinations are not performed.