Women's Health In Women's Hands

See Your Cervix!

In your Home

How to do Self-Exam

With a mirror and a light, you can see your cervix, the opening to the uterus, called the cervical os which leads to the cervical canal, and the vaginal walls.

Lubricate your speculum with the duckbill closed and the handle in the upward position.  Grasping it by the duckbills, gently insert it with the bills closed, into your vagina, as you would insert a tampon, until the handle touches the pubic area. CAUTION: Do not insert the speculum if you experience pain.  You may need a smaller size.

Next, squeeze the handles together (this will open the speculum within your vagina).  Press down the part of the handle with the finger depression while pulling up on the longer handle.  This will lock the speculum open.  (You will hear a click).  You can adjust the handle open to three positions.

To see yourself, hold the mirror between your legs and direct the light toward it.

In this picture, a flashlight is not visible.  The flashlight is useful in order to clearly view your cervix (avoid using LED light as it’ll make your cervix look bluish)

The light will reflect off the mirror into your vagina so that you can see your cervix in the mirror.  Do not be discouraged if you are not successful your first try. The speculum may have to be moved around or be reinserted before the cervix will pop into view.  Having someone with you to tell you when it is in view is of great help.  Many women have had to try several times before they were successful. But they were always successful.

After viewing yourself, remove the speculum, either open, or by slowly pushing the longer handle down to unlock the two bills.  Slowly pull the speculum straight out.  Wash it with hot water and a mild soap and store it in a clean place. 

The Position of the Uterus

Depending on what position a woman is in when she does self-examination with a speculum, she may see her cervix lying back with the os on top.  This would usually indicated a uterus that is “tipped” toward the back.  Or, she may see the cervix looking squarely at her.  Or, she may see the cervix facing downwards; the uterus is tipped toward the front.  If she changes position, or if she removes the cervix, stands up and jumps up and down, she find that her uterus is now lower in the vagina and the cervix facing forward.  None of these variations is of any significance.

For pictures of Healthy Cervixes please visit our webpage on “How To Stay Out of The Gynecologists Office(images are on the left hand side of page).

Can you spot a problem? … Please visit our webpage “How To Stay Out of The Gynecologists Office” or download the following document for further information/assistance…

Order your own speculum

Either of the following links will direct you to a provider of the self-help kits or you can contact Carol Downer to purchase a speculum

 Women’s Health Specialist or Feminist Women’s Health Center

To contact us:

2250 Fair Park Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90041
Phone : 323-960-5026
Fax: 323-960-5026
EMail: whwh@womenshealthinwomenshands.org

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