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Downward Trend Seen in Pelvic Exams Among Younger Women

Non-Hispanic black women in 2015 to 2017 had highest receipt of a pelvic exam in previous 12 months

WEDNESDAY, June 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) — From 1988 to 2017, the number of U.S. women aged 15 to 44 years who received a pelvic examination in the previous 12 months decreased, according to a data brief published online June 26 by the National Center for Health Statistics.

Gladys M. Martinez, Ph.D., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues described trends, overall and by age, since 1988 in the receipt of a pelvic examination in the previous year.

The researchers found that among women aged 15 to 44 years, there was a decreasing trend in the receipt of a pelvic examination in the previous 12 months from 1988 through 2017. This decrease was seen primarily among women aged 15 to 20 and 21 to 29 years. During 2015 to 2017, non-Hispanic black women had the highest receipt of a pelvic examination in the previous 12 months, followed by non-Hispanic white women and Hispanic women. Receipt of a pelvic examination in the previous 12 months increased with education level during 2015 to 2017.

“These results could provide a benchmark for estimates of the prevalence of pelvic examinations before the 2018 ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists)-updated guidelines,” the authors write.

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