The Women's Clinic
The Women's Health Service at FIU offers a safe, private and welcoming setting for women's unique needs and concerns. We provide basic gynecological services with a focus on primary care, education, and prevention. Our mission is to provide access to high-quality, affordable primary care for women students and to serve as a resource for student development, education, and research.
Our clinical providers have a broad wealth of experience in women's health. They are Nationally Board Certified in their specialties. Our staff includes Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners (ARNPs), Registered Nurses (RNs) and a consulting Gynecologist who performs procedures and consultations on referral by FIU Clinicians.
We make every effort to maintain reasonable charges in order to keep ourselves affordable for our patients. We also try to keep abreast of any special cost-saving programs offered by manufacturers (drugs, vaccines) and local service providers (Ultrasound, X-Rays, Mammograms).
The Nurse Practitioners also serve as clinical preceptors for FIU Graduate Students in the School of Nursing Family Nurse Practitioner Program, teaching and mentoring RNs as they develop new skills and knowledge in preparation for their transition to advanced clinical practice.
Services offered by Nurse Practitioners include the following:
- Pap Smears
- Breast Exams
- Pelvic Exams
- Pregnancy Testing
- Diagnosis and Treatment of Urinary and Vaginal Infections
- Testing and Treatment for Sexually-Transmitted Disease (STD)
- Diagnosis and Management of Minor Gynecological Disorders
- Referrals to University Specialist, Community Specialist, and other Health Resources
Fee For Nurse Practitioner Services
There is currently no charge for visits with RNs or ARNPs at the Women's Clinic. Fees are assessed for lab testing (i.e. Pap Smears, urine testing, etc.) medications and immunization.
The Gynecologist serves as a consultant to the FIU Nurse Practitioners and Physicians and evaluates individual patient problems only upon direct referral. Appointment with the Gynecologist cannot be made directly by patients without prior consultation with an FIU ARNP or MD.
Services offered by the Gynecologist include the following:
- Colposcopy and Biopsy
- Cervical Cryotherapy
- Inter-Uterine Device (UID) insertion
- Removal of Cervical Polyps
- Endometrial Biopsy
- Other Minor Office Procedures and Exams
Fee for Gynecological Services
There is a $35 fee for an exam and/or consultation with the gynecologist. Fees are also charged for all of the above procedures performed by the Gynecologist in our clinic.
Annual Gynecological Exam
Annual exams are recommended for women 21 years and over. Healthcare providers assess normal development of reproductive organs and screen for certain health problems. A PAP and STD (Chlamydia & Gonorrhea) testing are offered along with a breast examination. At this time patients can talk with practitioners about any sexual health concerns and/or review birth control options.
Condoms provide protection against STI’s and can be used by both men and women. They are easy to use and require little practice to use correctly. They can be used with lubricant which help condoms from breaking and can make sexual activity more comfortable and pleasurable.
Bacterial Vaginosis is an overgrowth of certain bacteria in the vagina and results in the disruption of the normal balance of vaginal bacteria. It can be accompanied by discharge, odor, pain, itching or burning.
Birth control pills when taken consistently are one of the most effective methods to prevent pregnancy and/or regulate menstruation. To get birth control all patients must have a Well Woman Exam prior to receiving a prescription.
Breast Exam is an examination of the breast and can be done by a practitioner or by patient. This is a self-exam and can be done one week after end of period. Doing breast exams help you learn the normal feel and appearance of your breasts, making subtle changes easier to detect should they occur.
The Diaphragm is a nonhormonal contraceptive which can protect by providing a barrier against sperm. It should be inserted 6 to 8 hours before sex and the patient must be fitted and educated about use by a professional. It does not protect against HIV although there is a mild reduction in the risk of some STDs.
DepoProvera is a birth control injection given every 12 weeks. It works by prohibiting monthly ovulation. DepoProvera also causes the cervical mucus to thicken, making sperm less able to enter the uterus.
Candida Vaginitis is caused by several species of fungi and is commonly called a “yeast” infection. Fungi is normally present in the vagina in small amounts and do not cause problems. However, at times, especially after antibiotic use, there can be an overgrowth of the fungi and symptoms such as itching, redness on the vulva, and/or discharge can occur.
Chlamydia is a common bacterial infection which can be present without symptoms. If untreated it can lead to PID in women and affect fertility. It is treatable with antibiotics.
Condoms and Lube
Condoms and Lube provide protection against both sexually transmitted infections (STI) and pregnancy. Condom use can be enhanced by the use of lubricants, as lubricants help protect condoms from breaking and can make sexual activity more comfortable and pleasurable. The male condom is 97% effective while the female is 95% effective.
Dysmenorrhea (Painful Periods)
Dysmenorrhea (Painful Periods) is pain experienced during menstruation which affects the activities of daily living. It usually begins at the start of the period although it can occur days before period. Many women also may experience diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, back pain, leg pain, headaches and dizziness. A warm bath or heating pad on abdomen, meditation or aerobic exercises has been known to help with the pain. Healthcare providers may also suggest hormonal treatment or other medications which relax the uterus muscles. Exercise has also been shown to decrease symptoms. Students can be evaluated and treated for this condition at the student health clinic.
EC (Emergency Contraception)
Emergency Contraception pills or “morning-after pills”, can be used if you have had unprotected vaginal intercourse in the last 3 days and do not want to get pregnant. It is commonly used in instances of unplanned or unwanted vaginal intercourse, condom failure or incorrect usage of contraception. The sooner emergency contraception is initiated, the more effective it will be.
Endometriosis is a condition in which the cells lining the uterus grow in other areas of the body. This can cause pain, irregular bleeding, and possibly infertility. I Symptoms include painful periods, pain with sexual intercourse, pain with bowel movements, pelvic or lower back pain that may occur before or during the menstrual cycle. Treatment includes medications to control pain or surgery to remove areas of endometriosis.
A condom fitted for a female that provides protection against pregnancy and STDs. May be used in conjunction with spermicides and lubricant.
Cystic breast tissue in an otherwise normal breast which does not constitute a diseased state. Treatment may include eliminating caffeine, vitamin supplements including Vitamin E and Primrose oil.
The inflammation or infection of hair follicles frequently caused by shaving and waxing. Treatment at our women’s clinic is recommended.
A bacterial infection that is sexually transmitted and often does not have symptoms. It is easily treated with antibiotics, but if left untreated, it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. Testing is available in the health clinic. Condoms offer protection from STDs.
A well women exam of reproductive organs which is recommended for all previously or currently sexually active women and all women age 21 and older. This exam frequently includes STD testing, a pap smear, a breast, physical exam and contraceptive and health counseling.
A viral infection affecting the liver. Hepatitis A, B or C can cause hepatitis. This liver inflammation often causes pain, fatigue, fever and other symptoms. There is a vaccine for both Hepatitis A and B, but there is no vaccine yet for Hepatitis C. Hepatitis A can resolve spontaneously, but Hepatitis B and C can cause chronic illness and increases the risk of liver cancer. Hepatitis B and C can be sexually transmitted. Condom use greatly reduces the risk of acquiring these infections.
A common viral infection transmitted through the skin. A large percentage of the population has antibodies to Herpes I which is the cause of oral herpes, but can also cause genital herpes. Herpes II is primarily in the genitalia. It is estimated that half of the population that has Herpes II is unaware that they have the infection. Herpes II can be transmitted without a person having obvious symptoms. It is treated with antiviral medication. There is no cure for Herpes, but there is daily suppressive therapy that can reduce the risk of reoccurrence and transmission. The risk of this infection can be greatly reduced by using condoms. Testing is available at the student health clinic.
A condition that is characterized by an excessive growth of hair or the presence of hair in unusual places that occurs more often in women.
HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)
Human Immunodeficiency Virus is an infection that is not apparent for many years. It is spread through bodily secretions and sexually. Condoms greatly reduce the transmission of HIV. There is no cure, but there are medications that can help reduce the progression of the disease. Hiv testing is available at the student health clinic.
HPV (Human Papilloma Virus)
Human Papilloma Virus is a large family of viruses. There is a group of HPV that is sexually transmitted. Exposure is common, but may not always cause infection. The low risk type of HPV causes genital warts and is treatable and usually does not recur unless a person is exposed to another strain that also causes warts. The high risk types of HPV can infect the cervix of women or the anus and /or mouth of both men and women. This type of HPV can lead to cervical cancer, anal cancer and oral cancer. The Pap smear is a test to screen for cervical cancer and cellular changes on the cervix that may be due to HPV. Anal Paps may be available in the future for both men and women to screen for cellular changes due to HPV of the anus. There is a vaccine available that prevents the most common types of low risk and high risk HPV. It is available for both men and women ages 9-26.
The Intrauterine Device (IUD)
The Intrauterine Device is a birth control device that is inserted into a woman’s uterus. It is made of plastic or metal and has a string attached. Its presence causes the environment of the reproductive tract to change which prevents the egg from being fertilized or prevents the fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus.
Kegel Exercises strengthen some of the muscles which control the flow of urine. It is often prescribed for people who have difficulty controlling their bladder.
Please see Condoms and Lube under C
The time when the menstrual cycle permanently ends. This usually occurs between the ages of 45-55. Occasionally hormones are prescribed by a wooman’s gynecologist or family provider to control symptoms or prevent osteoporosis.
Female reproductive cycle usually 21-35days. Irregular menstrual cycles can be evaluated at the women’s clinic. Missed menstruation may be due to stress, pregnancy, birth control pills, IUD (intrauterine device for pregnancy prevention), or infection.
Please see dysmenorrhea.
A mildly contagious skin rash that causes wart-like lesions that are not associated with Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
The excessive calicification of bones causing spontaneous fractures. This occurs mostly in menopausal women.
Cancer that originates in the ovary. It is the second most common gynecological malignancy, and the most common cause of death among women who develop gynecological cancer.
A sac that develops in the ovary. It usually contains fluid and is usually nonmalignant.
The periodic ripening and rupture of the mature graafian follicle and the discharge of the ovum from the ovary. This usuallly occurs midcycle or 2 weeks after the start of the menstrual cycle in a 28day cycle.
The female reproductive or germ cell which is capable of developing into a new organism when fertilized by a spermatozoon.
The name of the lab test to check for abnormal cells on the cervix of the uterus. This is a screening test for cervical cancer and to detect early cellular changes on the cervix. The test is performed during the pelvic exam and is recommended at age 21.
Lice that is sexually transmitted to the genitalia. It clings to the hair shaft and causes itching.
Pubis Scabies is caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei. It is an infestation that is transmitted by intimate contact or by infected clothing.
Pain associated in the pelvic region of women. This is often due to ovarian cysts, infection, ovulation, or menstrual cramps.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease is an acute infection of the upper genital tract structures in women involving the uterus, oviducts, and ovaries. It is usually caused by a sexually transmitted organism.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
A condition characterized by multiple cyst formation in the ovaries. It also involves metabolic abnormalities causing weight gain, hirsuitism and an increased risk of diabetes.
The implantation of a fertilized egg caused by the spermatozoon during unprotected sexual intercourse. This usually results in a missed period.
The medical evaluation and care during pregnancy. It should begin as soon as possible to monitor the health status of the mother and the fetus.
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
It is a condition that is characterized by physical and behavioral symptoms that occur repetitively in the second half of the menstrual cycle and can interfere with some aspects of a women’s life. Often exercise and health lifestyles are recommended to reduce the symptoms.
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
The most severe form of PMS affecting a small percentage of the female population.
A kidney infection usually due to bacteria that causes pain, fever and often requires hospital treatment.
Termination of pregnancy
The spontaneous ending of a pregnancy usually due to an abnormality or induced with medication or surgically.
A sexually transmitted infection that often causes vaginal or urinary burning and vaginal discharge.
Vaginal health is determined during an exam allowing a healthcare provider to assess normal development of reproductive organs and screen for certain health problems. It also provides an opportunity to test heart, lung and breast health, and to talk with a clinician about any sexual health concerns. This is available at the University Women’s clinic.
Spasm of the levator ani muscle causing pain in the vagina.
Vaginal symptoms that may include vaginal discharge, itching and/or irritation. There may be an odor associated with the symptoms or it may be the only symptom. Painful sexual intercourse and painful urination can also occur. The cause can be determined with a vaginal exam and microscopy evaluation to determine appropriate treatment. This is evaluated at the Women’s clinic or with a gynecologist or a family physician.
A department in the Student Health Services that assists students with issues related to the guidance and counseling after an act of violence or assault.
A lesion to the genitalia that may or may not be causes by a sexually transmitted organism. This is determined at the Women’s clinic or through a gynecologist or a family physician.
Inflammation of the vulva usually due to an infection or exposure to an allergen.
Please see Candida Vaginitis