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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Brenner Children’s pediatric emergency department has moved back to its original location. Learn more

In order to help protect patients, family members and health care workers from the spread of COVID-19, no visitors are allowed at any of Wake Forest Baptist Health’s outpatient or inpatient facilities, except in certain situations.
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More COVID-19 Updates

Do You Need a Pelvic Exam to Get Birth Control?

Do You Need a Pelvic Exam to Get Birth Control?

When you go to a free clinic to get birth control, do you have to be examined by a doctor before you can get it?
- Dariya*

Not always. Until recently, women expected to have a pelvic exam before a doctor would prescribe any kind of birth control. Now experts agree that a physical exam is not always necessary before starting birth control.

Even though an exam is no longer required, it's a good idea in some cases. Some of the reasons why doctors or nurse practitioners do a physical exam before prescribing birth control are:

If these don't apply to you, let the clinic or doctor's office know that you don't want an exam when you make your appointment.

Reviewed by: Julia Brown Lancaster, MSN, WHNP-BC
Date reviewed: September 2013

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.