27 Secrets Gynecologists Will Never Tell You News


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Seriously, we don’t care if you’ve shaved your legs
or groomed down there.

Special thanks to the gynecologists who
provided intel and anecdotes for this post:
Dr. Alyssa
Dweck, Dr. Christin Gillier, Dr. Elizabeth
Dierking, Dr. Shenali Abeysekera, and Dr.
Stephanie Lum.

ID: 10406459

2. Or if
you’ve groomed down there.

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Actually, pubic hair can help prevent
infections and we’d rather you be careful down
there and not risk cutting yourself.

ID: 10392056

3. When
we make small talk, we’re just trying to help
you relax so we can make the exam as quick and
painless as possible.

When we make small talk, we're just trying to help you relax so we can make the exam as quick and painless as possible.

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We’ve found that most of the time, people will
relax their muscles as soon as they talk about
something comfortable and familiar. That’s why
we tend to ask them simple questions about
themselves while we’re doing parts of the exam
that may feel uncomfortable.

ID: 10392113

4. We’ve
been vomited on, peed on, pooped on; there’s
not really a bodily fluid we haven’t
encountered.

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Let’s just say it’s extremely hard to gross us
out.

ID: 10392175

5. We may
see up to 100 vaginas a week, so looking at
yours is just a normal day at the job.

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HULU

In other words, there’s no need to be
uncomfortable.

ID: 10389085

6.
Everyone tells us they’re self-conscious about
what their vagina or vulva looks and smells
like, BUT everyone is different.

Everyone tells us they're self-conscious about what their vagina or vulva looks and smells like, BUT everyone is different.

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No vulva is the same as another, and therefore
there is no “normal vulva.” Some vulvas have
larger labias, some have smaller labias. The
look, smell, size, and color varies, and we’d
love for women to embrace that instead of
buying products and trying to shove things up
there that could put them at risk for
infections.

ID: 10392066

7. But
when we’re at social gatherings, we don’t
really want to be asked about all the different
types of vulvas and vaginas we get to see.

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There’s a place and a time. Obviously, that’s
not why we chose to go to school for 8+ years
to become an OB-GYN.

ID: 10392019

8. By the
way, all of us are FULLY TRAINED surgeons. We
don’t just give annual exams.

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Our job doesn’t just consist of Pap smear tests
and prescribing birth control. As
gynecologists, some of us actually get to
operate a bit, performing two of the most
common surgeries: C-sections and
hysterectomies.

ID: 10392024

9. We’re
really good at holding our pee.

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You don’t get too many opportunities to make it
to the bathroom when you’re in surgery or
helping deliver a baby.

ID: 10392183

10. And a
lot of the time we don’t know when our next
meal is going to be.

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ABC

You can try to plan out your day. But the truth
is, babies rarely ever come on schedule. So
sometimes you’ll go an entire shift without
eating, or you’ll try to wolf down a meal as
fast as you can in between appointments or
surgeries because you never know when you’re
going to eat next.

ID: 10399371

11. We
get really excited about the weird stuff that
happens, like finding teeth and hair in tumors.

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ABC

Yes, sometimes hair and teeth, along with a lot
of other stuff, can grow in ovarian tumors.

ID: 10392229

12. And
we usually have photos or videos of tumors,
bacteria, huge cysts, or uteruses on our phone.

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These are usually to show patients what we took
out of them after the surgery is over. As long
as there’s no patient identification, it’s
okay. And we might have videos of microscope
slides showing bacteria swimming around from a
vaginal swab to show patients what the bacteria
looks like.

ID: 10398434

13. And
yes, some of us are men.

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Men who you can also be comfortable with, who
are great at their jobs, and who we’d send our
own family members to.

ID: 10387037

14. We’re
not here to judge your sexual history or
preferences; we just want you to be honest with
us so we can help you be safe.

We're not here to judge your sexual history or preferences; we just want you to be honest with us so we can help you be safe.

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Trust us, we hear it all. So there’s not much
that phases us. All we want is for you to tell
us as much as possible so that we can help keep
you healthy.

ID: 10389079

15. We
live at a baseline of exhaustion, AKA we are
always tired.

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FOX

There’s no restriction on how many hours that
we work or when we have to work them. Some
shifts can be extremely long because you can’t
predict how things are going to go.

ID: 10392225

16. It’s
not that we don’t care, we just really don’t
know whether or not your STI means your partner
cheated on you.

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When you get test results back that are
positive for an STI, we know it’s upsetting and
we want to be there for you. But we don’t
really want to talk about whether or not your
partner cheated on you because there’s no way
for us to give you that answer. We just really
want you (and your partner) to take the
medication.

ID: 10392305

17. It’s
really frustrating when patients come in and
tell us the diagnosis they got from the
internet.

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We went to school and trained for a long time
in order to be able to exam you and diagnose
you. Please, don’t come in telling us that you
already know the source of the issue because of
something you read online and that you just
want the treatment for it. We need to give you
an exam and look over the results to make sure
we know exactly what’s going on.

ID: 10392177

18. We
find lots of random, sometimes odd, objects in
vaginas.

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We call them “retained foreign bodies.” Please,
please be careful about what you’re sticking up
there. Usually we find forgotten tampons and
used condoms. But every now and then we’ll find
something else like marbles, Legos, keys, etc.

ID: 10392172

19. Our
schedules can be incredibly demanding and we
often have to work through weekends and
holidays.

Our schedules can be incredibly demanding and we often have to work through weekends and holidays.

View this image ›

ID: 10392216

20. So
our coworkers tend to become family because of
how much time we spend together.

So our coworkers tend to become family because of how much time we spend together.

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It does differ from practice to practice, but
there’s a huge sense of camaraderie. We
probably see them more than we see our own
families.

ID: 10392188

21. We
get a lot of middle-of-the-night phone calls,
because we’re basically on-call always.

We get a lot of middle-of-the-night phone calls, because we're basically on-call always.

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There’s a lot about the job that you can’t
predict or plan for. We’ll get calls from
patients at any hour asking what their symptoms
mean or saying they think they their water
broke. But even if we’re up all night, we still
have to make our morning appointments as
scheduled.

ID: 10392220

22. And
our days can sometimes be a mix of check-ups,
surgeries, and deliveries.

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Our schedule is different every single day. We
can have a surgery scheduled for the morning
and then be back in the office that afternoon
to give patients their exams or go over test
results with them.

ID: 10392237

23. We
really want people to understand that pelvic
exams are not the same as Pap smears.

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HBO

So even if you’re not due for a
Pap smear, you should still go in to see a
gyno for a check-up and a pelvic exam once a
year.

(Recommendations may vary by age and medical
history, but the
American College of Obstetricians and
Gynecologists recommends annual pelvic
exams for anyone 21 and older.)

ID: 10387130

24. It’s
impossible for us to not to be affected by our
jobs.

It's impossible for us to not to be affected by our jobs.

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Many of us go into this field because we want
to take care of women. We get incredibly
invested in our patients and love seeing them
thrive and raise their families. So yes,
sometimes we get emotional after seeing
patients. We cry from being happy and we cry
from being heartbroken. We just find our own
time to do it.

ID: 10392169

25. And
it never gets easier to give bad news.

And it never gets easier to give bad news.

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Like when you have to tell a patient that you
can no longer find a heartbeat on the
ultrasound.

ID: 10387087

26. But
we also never really get over the fact that
we’re helping bring life into this world.

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Universal Pictures

Although we may get over being up at 3
a.m.

ID: 10389072

27. And
honestly, we really want to see you at
least once a year.

And honestly, we really want to see you at least once a year.

View this image ›

You can’t tell how healthy you are down there
from the outside, and sometimes getting your
annual exams can be life-saving. We want to
answer your questions if something seems off,
provide you with birth control and information
on how to use it if you need it, and make sure
that everything is in tip-top shape down there.
It’s only a little bit of your time but it will
always be worth it.

ID: 10392068

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