5 Symptoms You Should Tell Your Gynecologist About   

5 Symptoms You Should Tell Your Gynecologist About

Stomach pain
Clinical Contributors to this story:
Dana Jacoby, M.D.

Many women are in the habit of seeing their gynecologist annually for a checkup and necessary screening tests. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t call on your doctor in between visits if you notice any vaginal symptoms. 

“Women shouldn’t wait to see their gynecologist if they are experiencing concerning symptoms,” says obstetrics and gynecology specialist Dana Jacoby, M.D. “Your symptoms could be easily treated, but even a mild infection could become a problem down the road if not taken care of.” 

Dr. Jacoby shares five common symptoms that women shouldn’t ignore. 

Pelvic Pain and Discomfort

Mild cramping and discomfort during your menstrual cycle is normal, but if you are experiencing excessive pain, alert your gynecologist. 

“The presence of fibroids or endometriosis can significantly increase levels of discomfort, and your doctor can help you discover and target the issue,” Dr. Jacoby says. 

“Pain can also be an indication of ovarian cancers or ovarian cysts – while sometimes normal, ovarian cysts may require surgery and infrequently can become malignant.”

Vaginal Itching or Burning

If you are experiencing constant vaginal itching or burning, visit your gynecologist as soon as possible. These symptoms can be an indication of yeast infections, bacterial infections or some sexually transmitted diseases. 

“Sometimes these symptoms can be related to vulvar inflammation, caused from a topical exposure to an irritant, like a panty liner or a wipe,” adds Dr. Jacoby. 

Changes in Your Menstrual Cycle 

An irregular period can be an indication of a more significant health concern. If your cycle has become less than 21 days, greater than 35 days, or you’ve skipped two cycles, you should visit your gynecologist. Noticeably heavier or prolonged bleeding should also be investigated. 

Menopause, pregnancy and fibroids all can significantly impact the regularity of your cycle. 

Vaginal Odor

If you notice a particularly unpleasant vaginal odor, tell your gynecologist—even if the conversation makes you uncomfortable. “You could have a bacterial growth or vaginal infection that needs a prescription to cure,” Dr. Jacoby says.

Vaginal Bleeding

For women who have started a new birth control or who are nearing menopause, it’s normal to experience heavier periods. “But see your doctor if you are experiencing unexpected bleeding—especially after menopause—to understand the cause,” says Dr. Jacoby.

“It’s important to note that if you experience any of these symptoms, it is not an uncommon occurrence. Patients often Google search their symptoms and it can lead them down a path of panic,” shares Dr. Jacoby. “If you’re experiencing any unusual symptoms, it’s always a safe bet to connect with your doctor.”

Next Steps & Resources:

The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.


Subscribe to get the latest health tips from our expert clinicians delivered weekly to your inbox.

Six Ways to Treat Bladder Leakage

Worrying that you will leak urine if you laugh, sneeze or cough can affect your daily activities.

What You Should Know About COVID Vaccines & Menstrual Cycles

Can a COVID-19 vaccine affect a woman’s menstrual cycle? According to a recently published study, here’s what researchers found:

Do Uterine Fibroids Impact Pregnancy?

If you are expecting—or hoping to become pregnant—here’s what you should know about uterine fibroids.

The Doctor Appointments Women Should Make Every Year

Women are known to visit doctors more often than men do. But what doctors should women see annually to best stay on top of their health?

Spring is in the Air: Managing Your Spring Allergies

Spring is in the air, and so are seasonal allergens. Here are some tips and precautions you can take to enjoy outdoor activities this spring.

3 Myths About Breast Cancer, Debunked

Breast surgeon Yolanda Tammaro, M.D., knows her patients may be running the gamut of emotions when they step into her office.

We use cookies to improve your experience. Please read our Privacy Policy or click Accept.