Women commonly think of their trip to the gynecologist as just a Pap smear, but we do so much more. New Pap guidelines in 2012 reduced the recommended frequency of paps from every year to every 3 years and recommend starting Paps at age 21. One unintended consequence of this recommendation is that women are not coming in for their check ups as often. Your gynecologist is screening for STDs and other gynecologic problems like fibroids, polyps, and cysts. The CDC recommends that sexually active women under 25 get screen for chlamydia every year. Chlamydia is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. and can be easily treated if caught. Untreated it can cause infertility and pelvic inflammatory disease. The Pap smear is only one part of what we do even if it is the most memorable, so keep coming to see us every year.