Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Dr. Mawuli Brosius is on a mission. She wants to help ensure that women understand the importance of getting their annual exam—even when they’re not due for a Pap test.

“Women need to come in for that annual screening—there are things I can pick up before your next Pap test,” explains Dr. Brosius. “For example, we need to make sure there are no lesions; no a-typical bleeding; no abnormalities in the cervix and ovaries; and no bladder or pelvic prolapse.”

A close bond with patients

Dr. Brosius started practicing at WellSpan OB/GYN in Waynesboro in 2017. She chose the group because of its midwife model and the close relationships it fosters between providers and their patients. “I wanted a very intimate practice where the provider and patient have a close bond,” she says. Dr. Brosius has young children and enjoys having that in common with many of her patients.

“Having kids myself,” she says, “I can share that experience with my patients and can relate to what they’re going through.”

Using the midwife model also means providers in the group work side by side to achieve the best outcomes.

“We all have a role to play for the best benefit of the patient,” explains Dr. Brosius. “We have mutual respect and understanding as we collaborate, each bringing our own knowledge for the best possible care.”

WellSpan OB/GYN in Waynesboro gives patients a full physical examination in addition to the standard gynecologic and breast exams, so women get a head-to-toe check of their overall health.

Patients have an opportunity to ask questions and share concerns they may have, and providers can help set goals to improve health for the upcoming year.

Screening timeline

Visiting your primary care provider regularly and following recommended screening guidelines may mean catching disease or ailments early, when treatment can be most effective. This handy guide shows what screenings you should have when.

Bone mineral density test

Age 40–64, discuss with your doctor if you are at risk for osteoporosis. Age 65 or older, get this test at least once. Talk to your provider about repeat testing.

Blood pressure test

Get tested at least every two years if you have normal blood pressure (lower than 120/80). Get tested once a year if you have blood pressure between 120/80 and 129/80. Discuss treatment if you have blood pressure of 130/80 or higher. Ask your provider if you need a baseline screening cholesterol test.

Breast cancer screening (mammogram)

According to American Cancer Society (ACS) guidelines, women age 40–44 who are considered average risk have the option to start screening every year. The ACS recommends that average risk women age 45–54 have a mammogram every year. Women age 55–74 can switch to a mammogram every other year, or continue yearly mammograms. Speak with your provider to determine your risk. Women age 75 and older should ask their provider if they need to be screened.

Cervical cancer screening (pap test)

Beginning at age 30 until age 64, as part of their annual wellwoman exam (including breast and pelvic exams), all women should get a Pap test and HPV test together every five years. Your provider may recommend a different frequency based on your health. Women age 65 and older should ask their doctor or nurse if they need a cervical cancer screening.

Colorectal cancer screening (colonoscopy)

The ACS recommends that average risk women get a colonoscopy every 10 years starting at age 50. Women with an increased risk, such as a family history of colorectal cancer, may need to receive different tests more frequently or start screening at a younger age. Discuss your risk with your primary care provider. Women age 76 and older should ask their doctor or nurse whether they need to continue screening for colorectal cancer.