How long has it been since your last check-up? Many women put it off, but regular care with an obstetrician/gynecologist can give important guidance to make the many transitions of womanhood easier.

“You don’t know what resources are available for gynecologic care until you see a provider,” said Bayless Drum, MD, gynecologist at the Pavilion for Women Obstetrics and Gynecology in Pearland.


While a first gynecologist visit can be seen as a part of the transition to adult female life, teens have a lot to gain from seeing a gynecologist early. 

Education about menstrual cycles can be a topic young women may be hesitant to discuss on their own. African American women may be prone to heavy periods, which can cause fatigue and dizziness when enough blood is lost to cause low blood counts, or anemia. Anemia is both treatable and preventable when due to heavy menstrual flow.

“If a woman has heavy menstrual bleeding, she does not have to suffer through it. There may be safe and effective interventions available to her,” said Dr. Drum.
An early visit to a gynecologist can prompt open discussion about how heavy periods may be affecting a teenager’s life, monitor for signs of anemia and provide safe and effective resources for making periods lighter and less painful.

Pre-pregnancy care

Prenatal care is crucial for decreasing pregnancy complications for both mother and baby. Additionally, pre-pregnancy visits are equally important and can be used to screen for medical conditions that may affect maternal health, such as sickle cell disease, diabetes or high blood pressure. Medications to treat these and other chronic conditions can be modified so that they are safe to use once a woman becomes pregnant.

These visits are also an opportunity to find a medical team that you trust before you’ll depend on them to provide compassionate and meticulous care during pregnancy. For African American women, who, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, experience some of the highest rates of pregnancy complications in the nation, finding a trusted and competent provider is especially important.

“It is well known that African Americans are at increased risk for complications or even death during pregnancy. That is due to a lot of factors, including genetics, socioeconomic circumstances, provider bias and a woman’s previous experience with the health care system. One thing that I emphasize for all women, but especially for African American women, is a visit before pregnancy with a health care provider,” said Dr. Drum.

Before and after menopause

Recent years have seen a significant expansion in the treatment options available to women experiencing menopause symptoms, such as vaginal dryness, hot flashes and mood instability. A women’s health care practice can help manage these symptoms and can even offer referrals to specialty centers such as The Menopause Center at Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women. A gynecologist can do a lot more when a woman reaches mid-life.

“There is a gap in care for women after they have completed child bearing through when they experience extreme menopause symptoms. Care at regular intervals can make the transition through menopause a lot easier,” said Dr. Drum.

Hot flashes and mood disorders, for example, are easier to treat when the symptoms are mild, before they become severe.

Similar to heavy periods and hot flashes, some changes that can occur after menopause, such as vulvar itching, post-menopausal bleeding or painful intercourse, are needlessly tolerated when safe and effective resources are available to treat them. 

You deserve support

In this era of medical and scientific innovation, every woman deserves to know about the advancements in obstetrics and gynecology that can lead to a healthier and more comfortable life. Regular visits to a women’s health care practice offer that opportunity.

“For women who aren’t sexually active, women who have sex with women or women who are past menopause, there’s a misconception that they don’t need a Pap test or don’t need to see a gynecologist, but gynecology still has a lot to offer you,” said Dr. Drum. “I love being a home base for women and being the person they can go to ask what’s normal and not normal in what they are experiencing. At Pavilion for Women Obstetrics and Gynecology in Pearland, we focus on easy access to care with a kind and experienced staff to make that possible.”

To learn more visit or to schedule an appointment call 281-412-4335.