Physical Care: Reproductive System

By: Olivia Glaeser and Kaitlyn Lewis

Mammograms

A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast, they are used to check for breast cancer in women who may or may not have symptoms. A screening mammogram is a mammogram used to screen women who don't show any signs or symptoms of breast cancer. A diagnostic mammogram screens women who show signs of breast cancer such as nipple discharge or a thickening of the skin on a woman's breast. Only women receive mammograms. It is recommended that women the age of 40 or older should get mammograms annually.

Pap Smears

A pap smear is a medical test that detects for problems within a girl's cervix. A small brush will be used to wipe a sample of mucus from a female's cervix. This sample will then be tested to insure the cells of the sample are normal. Only females can receive a pap smear. Women in their 20s should have the test every 3 years.

Testicular Exams

A testicular exam checks for the early signs of testicular cancer. Males check for unusual bumps or lumps on their testicles. It is important that these exams begin at a young age so males can identify any irregularities as soon as possible and can become familiar with their usual size of shape of their testicles. Men can conduct testicular self examinations. These examinations can begin as young as 15 and should be performed monthly.

Prostate Exams

Prostate exams test for prostate cancer. Prostate exams test the amount of prostate specific antigen in an individual's blood. Cancer cells typically make more PSA than noncancerous cells, so if the amount of PSA is high, it is possible that you have prostate cancer. Only men receive prostate exams. Most organizations recommend that men between the ages of 40-70 should have prostate exams between every 1-2 years.