Age-Appropriate Gynecologic Care
A patient’s first visit to the gynecologist should be a positive experience.
All examinations conducted at the Center for Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology are age-appropriate and provided by a sensitive and caring specialist. Educational resources are available for patients and their families. All physicians and staff make special efforts to explain tests, treatments and procedures. All patients and their families are encouraged to ask questions.
Why should my child see a pediatric or adolescent gynecologist?
The gynecologic examination of a child is completely different from that of an adult.
Before puberty, a child is susceptible to unique injuries and infections due to the un-estrogenized state of the tissues of the introitus, hymen and vagina. Our specialists have expertise in the variations of normal prepubertal anatomy and physiology, as well as the ability to communicate both with the infant or child and her parents. The examination will take place in a matter which is reassuring, non-threatening and without discomfort. We have special instruments and equipment which allow us to examine young children and teens.
Adolescents also have special needs in their examination, especially if this is a first pelvic examination. The first examination is an opportunity to educate young patients about the breast and pelvic examination, answer questions about development, and provide medical reassurances and information about issues of health and sexuality. We provide abstinence counseling as well as contraceptive counseling and pregnancy prevention strategies.
We are able to address the special gynecologic needs of a child or teen with physical or mental disabilities, or chronic underlying health problems. Our office is specially equipped to allow easy access for patients with physical disabilities.
Our doctors are skilled in the specialized procedures required for medical evaluation and surgical management and correction of gynecologic disorders in this age group. The pediatric and adolescent gynecology service works in close coordination with the referring physicians as well as the pediatric specialty groups at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.