25 answers

Ob-Gyn Or Family Doctor?

Hi Moms,

Is it necessary to ever go to an ob-gyn again if you are done having kids? Can't I just see my regular family doctor for my annual pap smears and for birth control prescription refills? Thanks!!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

I would assume that an OB, because of their training and their "expertise" with female parts is the doctor you should see even if you do not plan on having children. I would never want to see my regular physician for female exams.

2 moms found this helpful

I see my regular family doc for my yearly paps. But, he himself said that if there is ever a problem, he would prefer I see a GYN.

1 mom found this helpful

I went to a family doctor for years. Last year I had an abnormal pap and my doctor was pretty laissez-faire about it. I was not impressed, even when I had a second pap done.

I decided that going into menopause it was probably best to see someone whose specialty is gyn.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Going to an ob-gyn is about much, much more than having kids. As you get older you will find your body changing, and a lot of that can be changes to your periods (longer, shorter, heavier, suddenly disappearing, unsual flows at unusual times, varies from person to person). You also need an annual mammogram, not just a pap smear and pills. Also, wouldn't you rather be seen by a doctor who has daily experience in: Examining women's breasts, examining women's uteruses, advising women on when/how to stop birth control as they age, answering questions about menopause, handling unusual changes to periods? Rather than seeing a doctor who might not ever get those questions, might not be familiar with the many types of birth control pills available, might do only a few pelvic exams a year, etc.? Remember, the law requires that insurance companies treat an ob-gyn as a woman's primary doctor, so insurance can't nail you on "specialist" rates. I'm done having kids but am facing down menopause in the next few years and wouldn't trade my gyn. for anything. You may be years from menopause, but having a good, ongoing relationship and history with a gyn. is a big comfort when you have concerns or just want to know the next step as you get older.

4 moms found this helpful

Sure -as long as your family doctor regularly offers those things as part of his/her services. If you have to ask for it and it doesn't seem like something they do regularly (and therefore keep up with the latest news about), I would stay with a gynecologist.

2 moms found this helpful

I had my primary care doctor do my annual exam/pap smear for 11 years because I didn't want to go back to an Ob/Gyn that I didn't like. When I experienced some problems later my pcp referred me back to an Ob/Gyn. The first thing I noticed was the exam and pap smear was MUCH less painful than when my pcp did it. The new OB/GYN said "doctoring is like anything else - the more you do, the better you get at it. Your PCP might do a pelvic/pap smear once every few weeks, I do several a day." I was sold. I think if you don't like your Ob/Gyn, get a new one but having an Ob/Gyn that you like is wonderful as you age....you might be done with an Ob, but there's a lot of other things on that Gyn side waiting for you.(we women are so lucky) I will say, though, as a money saver, your PCP can (and many will) refill birth control even if you are a little late with your check up.

2 moms found this helpful

Since being pregnant I always go to my OB for any female problem. Thats there field, so I am more comfortable going there with all my problems than our family doctor.

2 moms found this helpful

You can but I prefer to use both because of the extending knowledge of an OBGYN if you go to a family doctor they will refer you to see an OBGYN in the event of a needed procedure or surgical procedure or because there is an issue with your female reprodution system/vagina.

2 moms found this helpful

I would assume that an OB, because of their training and their "expertise" with female parts is the doctor you should see even if you do not plan on having children. I would never want to see my regular physician for female exams.

2 moms found this helpful

Of course, I know lots of woman who go to their family Dr now vs an Ob-Gyn.

Its something I would consider but I love my nurse practitioner at my OB office.

1 mom found this helpful

Only if you have problems. I would personally pick a gyn.

1 mom found this helpful

I would continue to go to OBGYN because they are experts in their field! I think its find to see a GP doctor if your GYN dr is unavailable for pap or something like that--but since its not their specialty, I wouldn't want to make it a regular thing. GL
M

1 mom found this helpful

if you trust your PCP, they SHOULD be able to paps and breast exams - it's NOT mandatory that you go to an OB/GYN for those issues - just USUALLY more comfortable.

1 mom found this helpful

My regular doc does all that stuff. If things get "out of her league" that's when she refers to a specialist. But she does my paps.

1 mom found this helpful

I think you should go once more for an annual and then discuss timing for future visits. Do GPs do pap smears? If you have insurance, you should really still be getting annuals if you are of child bearing age.

1 mom found this helpful

I went to a family doctor for years. Last year I had an abnormal pap and my doctor was pretty laissez-faire about it. I was not impressed, even when I had a second pap done.

I decided that going into menopause it was probably best to see someone whose specialty is gyn.

1 mom found this helpful

Yes you can. Our whole family sees a family doctor. I did the pill refills and paps through my doc. And I do that instead of a pediatrician for my kids.

1 mom found this helpful

It's not even necessary to see an ob/gyn if you're not done having kids! Give me a midwife over a doctor anyday!

1 mom found this helpful

OB/GYN's have more training in that area and I feel far more comfortable going to them for annual papsmears and birth control. And like Kim S. said, if your PCP ever saw a problem, they'd refer you to an OB/GYN, costing you more money & time in the long run. I say go straight to the best source.

1 mom found this helpful

I personally like to keep the two seperate.

1 mom found this helpful

You can go to your regular family doctor. I usually go to my OB because I trust him more and have a better relationship with him than my other doctor. Plus he deals more with that type of stuff than the Family Doctor......That's my thought on that.

1 mom found this helpful

You can ....
But if there's any issues (cysts, tumors, suspicious pap smear results, any thing else) you'll be sent to a gyn anyway. And they're probably more likely to spot it first, too, and give you a more clear picture of what to expect if something does happen.
I was just going to regular doc until I had cysts. I was sent to the gyn, and have stayed with him since then; I just feel like I get better care that way.

1 mom found this helpful

Yup you sure can but they are not specialized in this area so just remember that when making a decision.

1 mom found this helpful

You can go to your family Dr for annuals. I will always go to my OB b/c I like to keep my business down there separate from everything else :)

1 mom found this helpful

I don't think you're required to go, but I know my mom still goes to a GYN and she is 60+. I think if you're able to see a specialist, you should.

1 mom found this helpful

I see my regular family doc for my yearly paps. But, he himself said that if there is ever a problem, he would prefer I see a GYN.

1 mom found this helpful

Some primary care physicians handle pap smears and can do birth control, etc but you need to keep in mind that things that your OB is a specialist in, just in case you have issues down the line.

Well I had a family practice doctor for my entire first pregnancy with my daughter and he was wonderful. It was great because he was able to be baby's doctor when she was born too and it made it very easy to get in for appointments together. We had an ob that shadowed him throughout the pregnancy and was present at the delivery. I did have issues while pregnant and had to have some procedures such as a cone biopsy done and my family practice doc was great with all this. The ob assisted him. You can definitely just go to a family practice doc for pap smears and birth control. Honestly, you could just go to planned parenthood for that. If there is ever any issues that they can't handle, they will refer you to a specialist. You may also want to consider a Certified Nurses Midwife (CNM) or Nurse Practitioner for your needs. I find that you get a lot more personal attention from these types of medical professionals because they aren't so loaded down with patients. I currently have a CNM and she is wonderful. Been going to her for the last two years just for paps and such and I really like her.

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