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What all do they test for in a pap smear: What Should I Know About Cervical Cancer Screening?


Pap smear: Do I need one if I’m a virgin?

Do virgins need Pap smears?

Answer From Shannon K. Laughlin-Tommaso, M.D.

Most health care organizations recommend women begin regular Pap testing at age 21. If you’re a virgin — meaning you haven’t had sexual (vaginal) intercourse — you may have a low risk of cervical cancer, but you can still consider testing.

The purpose of a Pap smear is to collect cells from your cervix, which is the lower end of your uterus. The cells collected in a Pap smear can detect if you have cervical cancer or suspicious cells that indicate you may develop cervical cancer.

In most cases, cervical cancer is caused by a sexually transmitted infection called human papillomavirus (HPV). If you’ve never had any type of sexual intercourse, you’re unlikely to have HPV. However, there are other risk factors for developing cervical cancer, such as family history and smoking, so talk to your doctor if you have concerns.

For effective cervical cancer screening, many organizations recommend an initial Pap smear at age 21. Discuss when to begin cervical cancer screening with your doctor. Together you can decide what’s best for your particular situation.


Shannon K. Laughlin-Tommaso, M.D.

  • Pap smear: Still needed after hysterectomy?

April 22, 2020

Show references

  1. Final recommendation statement: Cervical cancer: Screening. Rockville, Md.: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Document/UpdateSummaryFinal/cervical-cancer-screening. Accessed Feb 15, 2017.
  2. Smith RA, et al. Cancer screening in the United States, 2017: A review of current American Cancer Society guidelines and current issues in cancer screening. CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. In press. Accessed Feb. 15, 2017.
  3. AskMayoExpert. Cervical cancer screening. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2016.

See more Expert Answers


Pap Test (Pap Smear): Purpose, Procedure, Results, Frequency

What Is a Pap Smear?

A Pap smear, also called a Pap test, is an exam a doctor uses to test for cervical cancer in women. It can also reveal changes in your cervical cells that may turn into cancer later.

Why Is a Pap Smear Done?

A pap smear is done to look for changes in cervical cells before they turn into cancer. If you have cancer, finding it early on gives you the best chance of fighting it. If you don’t, finding cell changes early can help prevent you from getting cancer.

Women ages 21-65 should have a Pap smear on a regular basis. How often you do depends on your overall health and whether or not you’ve had an abnormal Pap smear in the past.

How Often Should I Have a Pap Smear?

You should have the test every 3 years from ages 21 to 65. You may choose to combine your Pap testing with being tested for the human papillomavirus (HPV) starting at age 30. If you do so, then you can be tested every 5 years instead. HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI), and it’s linked to cervical cancer.


If you have certain health concerns, your doctor may recommend you have a Pap more often. Some of these include:

  • Cervical cancer or a Pap test that revealed precancerous cells
  • HIV infection
  • A weakened immune system due to an organ transplant, chemotherapy, or chronic corticosteroid use
  • Having been exposed to diethylstilbestrol (DES) before birth

Talk to your doctor if you have questions or concerns. They’ll let you know for sure.

Pap Smear Preparation

You shouldn’t have a Pap smear during your period. Heavy bleeding can affect the accuracy of the test. If your test ends up being scheduled for that time of month, ask your doctor if you can reschedule.

For the most accurate Pap smear, doctors recommend taking the following steps, starting 48 hours before your test.

  • Don’t have sex or use lubricants.
  • Don’t use sprays or powders near the vagina.
  • Don’t insert anything into the vagina, including tampons, medications, creams, and suppositories.
  • Don’t rinse the vagina with water, vinegar, or other fluid (douche).

Pap Smear Procedure

The test is done in your doctor’s office or clinic. It takes about 10 to 20 minutes.

You’ll lie on a table with your feet placed firmly in stirrups. You’ll spread your legs, and your doctor will insert a metal or plastic tool (speculum) into your vagina. They’ll open it so that it widens the vaginal walls. This allows them to see your cervix. Your doctor will use a swab to take a sample of cells from your cervix. They’ll place them into a liquid substance in a small jar, and send them to a lab for review.

The Pap test doesn’t hurt, but you may feel a little pinch or a bit of pressure.

Pap Smear Results

Your doctor will get them within a few days. They’ll come back either negative (normal) or positive (abnormal).

Normal result

A negative result is a good thing. That means your doctor didn’t find any precancerous or cancerous cells on your cervix. You won’t need another Pap until you’re due for your next scheduled one.


Abnormal result

If your results come back positive, it doesn’t mean you have cancer.

There are several reasons you could have an abnormal Pap smear.

  • Mild inflammation or minor cell changes (dysplasia)
  • HPV or other infection
  • Cancer or pre-cancer
  • Lab test error

Inflammation can happen if you’ve had sex or used a diaphragm shortly before having a Pap smear.

If you have inflammation or minor cell changes, your doctor may take a “wait and see” approach. They may suggest you have another Pap test in a few months. If the abnormal cells haven’t cleared up by then, your doctor may order more tests. These might include a procedure called a colposcopy.

During a colposcopy, your doctor will insert a speculum into your vagina, just as they did for the Pap test. This time, they’ll look at the cervix with a colposcope. That’s a tool that has a lens and a bright light that allow your doctor to get a better look at your cervix. Your doctor will swab your cervix with vinegar or some other liquid solution. It’ll highlight any suspicious-looking areas. Your doctor will be able to see them through the lens on the colposcope.

If they find areas that don’t look right, they’ll take a sample (biopsy). They’ll send the sample to a lab for further testing. They may swab your cervix with a chemical solution to limit bleeding.

Pap Smear Risks

A Pap smear is considered a safe procedure. But it’s possible that the test may miss some abnormal cells or cervical cancers (false negative). Talk to your doctor about the benefits and risks of cervical cancer screening.

What Is It & Tests


What is a Pap smear?

A Pap smear (also called a Pap test) screens for cervical cancer. The test checks for abnormal cells in the cervix that are cancerous or have the potential to become cancerous. During a Pap smear, your healthcare provider takes cells from the cervix to examine under a microscope for signs of cancer. The test is named for an American physician, Dr. George Papanicolaou, who developed the Pap smear.

What is the cervix?

The cervix is the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vaginal canal. Sperm travels through the vaginal canal and cervix to the uterus to fertilize eggs. During pregnancy, the cervix closes to keep the baby in the womb (uterus). The cervix opens during childbirth. When you aren’t pregnant, your cervix makes mucus to keep infection-causing bacteria out of the body.

Why do healthcare providers perform Pap smears?

Healthcare providers perform Pap smears as part of a pelvic exam. The test checks for:

What’s the difference between a pelvic exam and a Pap test?

During a pelvic exam, your healthcare provider examines and feels (palpates) the uterus, ovaries and other parts of the female reproductive system. This examination helps your provider identify infections, problems and certain types of cancer (but not cervical cancer). Your provider may also perform STD tests during a pelvic exam. A pelvic exam doesn’t always include a Pap smear.

What’s the difference between a Pap smear and a HPV test?

A HPV test checks for certain types of the virus that increase your cervical cancer risk. HPV is a common STD that affects approximately 79 million Americans. There are many different types of HPV. Not all cause cancer.

Providers can do HPV tests and Pap tests at the same time, using the same steps (a gentle scrape of the cervix for cell samples). When sending these samples to a lab, your provider specifies whether the lab specialist (pathologist) should check for precancerous or cancerous cells (Pap smear), HPV or both (a co-test).

Can a Pap smear detect STDs?

A Pap smear can’t detect STDs. To test for diseases like chlamydia or gonorrhea, your healthcare provider takes a sample of fluid from the cervix. Fluid isn’t the same as cervical cells. Blood tests can also identify certain STDs.

How often do I need a Pap smear?

Women and anyone assigned female at birth should start getting Pap smears starting at age 21 and HPV tests at age 30. How often you’ll have the test depends on many factors, including your age, health history and results from your last Pap or HPV test. Most people don’t need Pap smears after age 65.

Generally, Pap smears occur:

  • Every three years from ages 21 to 29.
  • Every three years from ages 30 to 65 without an HPV test.
  • Every five years from ages 30 to 65 with an HPV test.
  • Every year for those who have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or are immunocompromised.
  • Every year for those whose mothers took a medicine called diethylstilbestrol (DES) during pregnancy. Exposure to DES while in the womb increases cervical cancer risk.

Do I need a Pap smear if I’ve had a hysterectomy?

A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the uterus. A partial hysterectomy removes the uterus but not the cervix. You’re still at risk for cervical cancer and need Pap smears.

Some people have a complete hysterectomy (removal of the uterus and cervix) due to a cancer diagnosis. In that case, you’ll continue getting Pap smears to look for changes that might indicate a cancer recurrence. If you had a complete hysterectomy to treat a noncancerous problem, such as uterine fibroids, you probably won’t need Pap smears.

Test Details

How should I prepare for a Pap smear?

Some things that you do in the days before a Pap smear can affect test results. For the most accurate results, you should:

  • Not have vaginal sex for two days before your exam.
  • Not use tampons, vaginal creams or medicines, birth control foams or jellies, lubricants or douches for at least two days before the test.
  • Schedule the appointment at least five days after your period ends.

What should I expect during a Pap smear?

Pap smears take place at a healthcare provider’s office. The test takes a few minutes. It isn’t painful, but you may feel some discomfort. During the procedure, your healthcare provider:

  • Inserts a speculum into the vagina. You may feel a bit of pressure. This metal or plastic device holds the vagina open so your provider can see the cervix.
  • Uses a small brush or spatula to gently scrape cells from the cervix (a biopsy).

What should I expect after a Pap smear?

Your healthcare provider sends the samples to a lab. A specialist called a pathologist examines the samples under a microscope to look for abnormal cells that may indicate cancer or HPV.

Are there any risks to getting a Pap smear?

Pap smears are very safe. You may experience some light spotting (vaginal bleeding) after the test, but you shouldn’t have cramps or pain.

Results and Follow-Up

When should I get my test results?

It can take up to three weeks for your healthcare provider to receive the lab results.

What do Pap smear results mean?

When you receive your results, they may be:

  • Normal: No sign of disease.
  • Unclear: The lab couldn’t determine whether the cells are normal or abnormal. Your healthcare provider may have you come back immediately or in six months for another Pap smear.
  • Abnormal: The cells look different than they should.

Does an abnormal Pap smear result mean that I have cervical cancer?

An abnormal finding means that some cells in your cervix look unusual. Many things besides cancer can cause an abnormal result, including:

What follow-up tests might I need after an abnormal Pap smear result?

If you have an abnormal Pap smear result, your healthcare provider may perform another Pap smear immediately or in a few months. A second Pap smear can be helpful if your healthcare provider thinks an infection or other problems affected the test results.

Pap smears only screen for cancer — they can’t diagnose it. To get more information to help diagnose or rule out cervical cancer, your provider does a colposcopy. During this procedure, your provider:

  • Uses a microscope device (colposcope) to view the lining of the cervix and vagina.
  • Removes tissue samples from areas that look abnormal.
  • Sends the samples to a lab for testing.

Pap smears are a lifesaving screening tool. The test identifies abnormal cervical cells before they have a chance to become cancerous. More than 95% of the time, people treated for precancerous cells don’t develop cervical cancer. During a Pap smear, your healthcare provider may remove cells to test for HPV, a STD that increases your risk of cervical cancer. An unclear or abnormal Pap test result doesn’t mean you have cancer. Your provider can discuss test findings and next steps with you.

What Does a Pap Smear Test For?

A Pap smear test, short for Papanicolaou test, is a preventative care examination for women. This vitally important exam is meant to identify HPV (human papillomavirus) as well as early signs of cervical cancer. What gynecologists are testing for in a pap smear are abnormal or cancerous cells in the cervix.

Why Get a Pap Smear Test?

Cervical cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths. Both cervical cancer and HPV rarely show in systems, therefore, regular testing is one of the only methods of detection.

Regular pap smear testing can be lifesaving, as early identification of cervical cancer is almost always treatable. All adult women under 65 are recommended to get Pap smears once every few years depending on their age. That frequency increases for those with medical complications or impairments such as HIV or who have had cervical cancer in the past.

How to Get a Pap Smear

Because a Pap smear test falls under preventive care, it is covered by most insurances. When scheduling an appointment, there are a few requirements by doctors in order to ensure the most accurate result possible. The first is to not schedule a Pap smear during your period; wait at least 10 days after your period has ended. The second is that two days before the exam, refrain from using tampons, vaginal creams, and suppositories, douches or deodorant sprays, and having sex. Partaking in any of the aforementioned can affect the quality of the cervix samples and cause an erroneous result reading.

The procedure itself is virtually painless and quite simple. During a pelvic exam, the doctor inserts a speculum into the vagina to hold it open. Once there is clear access to the cervix (the entryway to the vagina/womb) a special smear brush is inserted to swab the surface and gather a sample of cervix cells and mucus. Spotting may occur after the exam but this is normal.

Pap Smear Test Results

It takes approximately one to three weeks for Pap smear test results to be determined. The results will either be “negative” meaning the cervix is healthy and negative for any potentially cancerous cells or “positive,” meaning that the cells within the sample were of various shapes and sizes when they should be uniform. If this is the case, it does not necessarily mean that one has cervical cancer.

A cervical infection might be a potential cause for the abnormality. This can be caused by a yeast infection or STD. Although a Pap smear may be an indirect source of STD detection, by no means is it meant to serve as a test for other sexually transmitted disease or other types of cancer.

If it has been more than three years since your last PAP smear test, visit a clinic that is part of UrgentMED. The friendly and helpful staff can perform all the routine gynecological examinations a woman needs. While most insurances cover Pap smear tests at no cost to the patient, UrgentMED offers affordable options for those without insurance. Don’t put off such an important test of health, visit one of their 13 Southern California locations today!

Pap Smear Test | How Much Does a Pap Smear Cost?

Pap tests find abnormal cell changes in your cervix. How often you get a Pap test depends on your age, medical history, and the results of your last Pap or HPV tests.

What happens during a Pap test?

Pap tests, sometimes called Pap smears, are very important tests for finding abnormal cells on your cervix that could lead to cervical cancer. Pap tests find cell changes caused by HPV, but they don’t detect HPV itself.

Pap tests may be part of your regular check up, pelvic exam or well-woman exam. During a Pap test, your doctor or nurse puts a metal or plastic speculum into your vagina. The speculum opens up to separate the walls of your vagina so that they can get to your cervix. Then they use a small sampler — a tiny spatula or brush — to gently collect cells from your cervix. The cells are sent to a lab to be tested.

Pap tests only take a few minutes. They shouldn’t hurt, but you might feel some discomfort or pressure when your doctor or nurse opens the speculum inside you. You might also feel a light scratching when they take cells from your cervix.

Do I need a Pap test?

You should start getting regular Pap tests at age 21. How often you get tested after that depends on your age, medical history, and the results of your last Pap or HPV tests. In general:

  • If you’re 21–29 years old, get a Pap test once every 3 years (starting at age 25, your doctor may switch to an HPV test – either one is fine).

  • If you’re 30–65 years old, get a Pap test and HPV test (co-testing) once every 5 years, or just a Pap test or HPV test every 3 years.

  • If you’re older than 65, you may not need Pap tests anymore.

You may need to get tested more often if you’ve had problems with your cervix before, have a weak immune system, or if your mother took a medicine called DES while she was pregnant with you. Your doctor or nurse will tell you which tests you need and how often you should get them.

What if I have an abnormal Pap test?

If your Pap test results are abnormal, don’t panic. It’s pretty common to have unclear or abnormal Pap test results. Most of the time, it doesn’t mean that you have cervical cancer.

  • An unclear test result means that your cervical cells look like they could be abnormal. But it isn’t clear if it’s related to HPV or something else. Unclear results are also called equivocal, inconclusive, or ASC-US.

  • An abnormal Pap test result means that there are abnormal cell changes on your cervix. This doesn’t mean that you definitely have cervical cancer. The changes may be minor (low-grade) or serious (high-grade). The more serious changes are often called precancerous because they aren’t cancer yet but can turn into it over time.

If you have an unclear or abnormal Pap test result, you made need further tests and/or treatment including:

  • Another Pap test

  • An HPV test: a test that looks for high-risk types of the virus that can cause precancerous cells

  • A colposcopy: a special exam to look more closely at your cervix to see if there are precancerous cells.

If your doctor finds abnormal cells during your colposcopy, you’ll probably need treatment. Common treatments include cryotherapy and LEEP.

Where can I go for a Pap test?

You can get a Pap test at your doctor or nurse’s office, a community health clinic, the health department, or your local Planned Parenthood health center.

More questions from patients:

Can you get a pap test while you’re on your period?

You can get a Pap test during your period. Your nurse or doctor may suggest scheduling the test for a time when you aren’t expecting your period because it can interfere with the results if you’re having any unexpected discharge. You’ll still be able to have your test even if you are on your period though — no matter how light or heavy your flow is.

Is a Pap test part of routine prenatal care?

Your nurse or doctor will perform a Pap test at your first prenatal appointment unless you’ve had one within the last three years. Generally you only need a Pap test every three years unless your doctor or nurse tells you otherwise. 

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Pap Tests (Pap Smear) | Beaumont Women’s Health

What is a pap test?

A pap test, also known as a pap smear, is a test to look for changes to the cervix that may indicate cervical cancer or a precancerous condition. The cells taken from the cervix during the pap test can also be used to test for the presence of HPV and can determine the HPV sub-type.

Why is a pap test done?

Pap tests are done to monitor women for changes in their cervix that could be signs of cervical cancer or pre-cancerous conditions (like cervical dysplasia). Most cervical cancer is caused by a virus called HPV (human papillomavirus). There are many strains of HPV, but only a few of them are known to cause cancer. Some strains of HPV can cause genital warts.

Cervical cancer can usually be prevented with regular pap tests because pap tests can detect early cellular changes in the cervix that often lead to cervical cancer. If those changes are detected, you can have treatment before cancer develops. 

Pap tests can save your life. It’s important to follow your doctor’s recommendations regarding testing.

When should a pap test be done?

The guidelines for pap tests have been changing in recent years, and not all doctors agree when a pap test should be done. Most doctors recommend girls and women should have their first pap test at age 21. Depending on personal history and risk factors, doctors usually recommend that women continue to have pap tests until they are at least 65.

If you have had your cervix removed and you do not have a history of cervical cancer or cervical dysplasia, you may not need to have pap tests. If you are older than 65 and haven’t had an abnormal pap test in more than 10 years, you do not likely need to have pap tests.

All women should talk to their doctors about what is right for them and when they should have pap tests.

What to expect from a pap test

There are some things that can interfere with the results of a pap test, so doctors tend to recommend the following for two to four days prior to a scheduled Pap test:

  • Do not put anything in your vagina, such as:
    • Tampons
    • Vaginal creams or medications
    • Vaginal suppositories
    • Do not have sex
    • Do not douche or use vaginal spray or powder

When you’re at the doctor’s office for your exam, here’s what you can expect.

You will be asked to remove your clothes, at least from the waist down. You will be given a gown to put on, and you may be given a sheet or cloth to cover your legs. You will lie on the exam table, put your feet in the stirrups, and move toward the end of the table. Before the doctor examines you, he or she will ask you to relax and let your knees fall outward. The more relaxed you are, the easier the exam will be. 

Once you are in the correct position, the doctor will insert a device called a speculum. This is used to hold your vaginal canal open during the test. Many doctor’s offices will warm the speculum before inserting it to make it more comfortable for you. Once the speculum is in, the doctor will use a long swab to gather cells from your cervix. This should not be painful, but some women do experience discomfort. Let your doctor know if you experience pain.

The swab will only take a few seconds. After the cells are collected, the doctor will remove the speculum. If you are not having a full pelvic exam, you will be able to get up at that point. If you are, the exam will continue. 

Throughout the pelvic exam and pap test, your doctor should tell you what he or she is doing so you will know what to expect and won’t have any surprises. 

After the test, you may bleed a little and may feel some light cramping and discomfort. This should pass within a few hours. If you have heavy bleeding or have severe pain, call your doctor’s office.

What information does my doctor get from a pap test?

The results of the pap test will tell whether there are any abnormal cells on the cervix. These abnormalities may include cervical dysplasia, a pre-cancerous condition, cervical cancer, or the presence of HPV. 

What are the next steps after a pap test?

The results of your pap test could take two to three weeks. Normal results may be mailed or emailed to you. If your results are abnormal, your doctor’s office may call you to set up additional tests or procedures. 

If your results are abnormal, do not panic. Not all abnormal pap tests show cancer or even pre-cancerous cell growth. Your doctor will explain your test results and what your next steps will be.

When should you call the doctor?

You should ask your doctor when you should have a pap test. Most women will have them every one to three years, depending on personal history, risk factors and age. 

And any time you have concerns about your reproductive health, you should call your doctor to make an appointment. Whether you’re experiencing pelvic pain, unexplained vaginal bleeding, pain during intercourse, urinary problems, vaginal discharge, itching, redness, or skin changes, we’re here to help. Don’t delay. Most conditions are not serious and can be addressed with treatment; however, serious conditions such as ovarian cancer do not always cause obvious symptoms. If you notice any changes or just don’t feel right, don’t hesitate to call.

Call 800-633-7377 today to schedule an appointment with a Beaumont OB/GYN or other health care practitioner for your next annual exam. 

What is it, what happens, and results

Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that develops in the cells in the lower part of the uterus. This region is called the cervix.

The cervix is small and narrow, and it connects the uterus to the vagina. It provides an entry for sperm to pass into the uterus. The cervix also provides an exit from the uterus for monthly menstrual blood flow or a baby during delivery.

There are two parts to the cervix, and two different types of cells occur there:

Endocervix: This is the innermost part of the cervix. It lines the “tunnel” leading from the uterus into the vagina. It contains tall, column-like cells that are responsible for mucus secretion.

Ectocervix: This is the outer portion of the cervix, and it protrudes into the vagina. The ectocervix is home to squamous cells, which resemble fish scales under the microscope.

Where these two cell types meet is where most cervical cancers and precancerous cells form.

A Pap smear is a screening tool that can help doctors detect abnormal cells and cancer. It works by sampling cells from the cervix.

Cervical cancer screening is vital for getting an early diagnosis of cervical cancer. With an early diagnosis, effective treatment is usually possible.

Doctors recommend two tests for this purpose:

  • The Pap smear, which checks for abnormal cells.
  • The human papillomavirus (HPV) test, which detects DNA from HPV to reveal both its presence and type.

This information can help a doctor determine whether a person has cervical cancer, or if they have an increased risk of developing this disease.

These tests can detect:

  • precancerous cell changes
  • the presence of HPV
  • the presence of cancer

If the tests lead to a diagnosis, a person can then seek treatment.

Routine screening does not always automatically include both tests at the same time, but a person can ask for an HPV test at the same time as a Pap smear.

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), deaths from cervical cancer decreased dramatically after the introduction of the Pap smear.

A doctor usually carries out a Pap smear during a gynecological pelvic exam. They insert a tool called a speculum into the vagina so that they can examine the cervix. Then, they take a sample of cervical cells using a brush or spatula and send them for testing.

If possible, it is best to avoid having a Pap smear during a menstrual period, especially if the flow is heavy, as this can affect the results of the test. However, if a person only has the chance to have the test during menstruation, it is still better to attend than not.

A person should not douche or put anything in the vagina to clean it before the test. Doctors do not recommend douching at any time.

Recommendations on Pap smear frequency depend on several factors.

These include:

  • age
  • medical history
  • exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES) when in the womb
  • HIV status
  • whether or not the person has a weakened immune system, for example, due to HIV

The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommend that:

  • Women aged 21–29 years should have a Pap test every 3 years.
  • Women aged 30–65 years should have a Pap test every 3 years, or an HPV test every 5 years, or a Pap and HPV co-test every 5 years.

After the age of 65 years, most women will not need a Pap smear. However, each person’s risk factors vary.

Those who have had abnormal test results in the past and those who are sexually active with more than one partner may need more frequent testing.

After a total hysterectomy, which is the surgical removal of the uterus and cervix, a Pap smear will no longer be necessary.

Anyone who has a hysterectomy because they had cancerous or precancerous cells should continue to have regular tests.

Everyone has different needs, so it is important that people speak to their doctor about their risk factors for developing cervical cancer and their need for screening.

The test results usually take 1–3 weeks to come back. Most test results are negative, but they can sometimes be positive. A positive result does not confirm that a person has cancer, but it indicates that more investigation is necessary.


In most Pap smears, the result is normal and does not reveal any abnormal cells.


Sometimes the result is ambiguous. The doctor may ask the person to have more tests to monitor for any changes. These additional tests are likely to take place either soon after the first test or about 6 months later.


Sometimes the result is “abnormal.” The doctor may recommend more tests straight away or after 6 months depending on the extent of the cell changes.

Common cell abnormalities include:

Atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS): These are mildly abnormal cells that do not meet the criteria for precancerous cells. If HPV is present, the doctor may recommend additional testing.

Squamous intraepithelial lesion: These lesions indicate possible precancerous cellular changes that are likely to need further testing.

A doctor will usually recommend following up with a colposcopy, with or without a biopsy.

During a colposcopy, the doctor uses a colposcope to magnify the view of the cervix, vulva, and vagina for examination. They may take a biopsy sample for evaluation in a laboratory.

They are divided into two categories:

  • Low grade: A low-grade lesion has a low risk of progressing to cancer in the near future.
  • High grade: A high-grade lesion has a high risk of progressing to cancer sooner rather than later.
  • Atypical glandular cells: This diagnosis is indicative of abnormal cells in the endocervix. These will require further testing.
  • Squamous cell cancer or adenocarcinoma: This diagnosis signals the likelihood of cancer and depends on the cell type that is atypical. Further testing is required.

What does an abnormal result mean?

It is possible to classify the cell changes as follows:

Low-grade lesion: The risk of a low-grade lesion imminently progressing to cancer is minimal.

High-grade lesion: A high-grade lesion has a high likelihood of becoming cancerous sooner rather than later.

Atypical glandular cells: There are abnormal cells in the endocervix that will need further testing.

Squamous cell cancer or adenocarcinoma: There is a likelihood of cancer, depending on the type of cell that is atypical. Further testing is necessary.

In 2019, the ACS estimate that there will be around 13,170 new diagnoses of invasive cervical cancer in the United States and approximately 4,250 deaths.

Screening and other types of prevention can reduce this risk dramatically.

There are often no symptoms until the later stages, when there may be bleeding or discharge from the vagina. This is why it is important to attend screening.

Risk factors for developing cervical cancer include:

  • not having the HPV vaccine
  • not attending routine screenings
  • having an HPV infection
  • smoking
  • having sex without using a condom
  • having several sexual partners
  • having a chlamydia infection
  • having a weakened immune system, for example, due to HIV
  • not including enough fruit and vegetables in the diet
  • being overweight
  • using birth control pills for an extended period
  • using an intrauterine device (IUD) for birth control
  • having several full-term pregnancies
  • being under 18 years of age for the first full-term pregnancy
  • taking the hormonal drug DES or having a mother who used it

Doctors also do not recommend douching, as this can increase the likelihood of exposing the vagina to bacterial infection.

What is human papillomavirus?

HPV is a virus that can lead to cervical cancer in some cases. There are over 150 types of HPV. Some types, for example, type 16 and 19, can lead to cervical cancer.

Other types can lead to different complications, such as noncancerous warts or papillomas.

HPV can pass from one person to another during vaginal, anal, or oral sex when there is skin-to-skin contact.

There is no cure, but the infection often resolves in time. However, if HPV becomes a long-term infection, the risk of cancer increases.

Treatment is available for HPV-related warts and cell changes.

Vaccination is available to protect against HPV infection. Until recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have recommended that young women have the vaccine up to the age of 26 years and young men up to 21 years.

In 2018, however, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended a form of the vaccine called Gardasil 9, which protects against HPV, for men and women aged 27–45 years.

Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that develops in the cervix. Before developing into cancer, cervical cells undergo abnormal changes that a Pap test can detect.

With early diagnosis and appropriate treatment, the chances of surviving cervical cancer are good.

If a doctor diagnoses cervical cancer in its earliest stage, the person has a 93-percent chance of surviving for at least 5 more years. However, if diagnosis occurs when cervical cancer is at the latest stage, the likelihood of survival falls to 15 percent.

The Office for Women’s Health note that cervical cancer is the “easiest gynelogical cancer to prevent,” as long as a person attends screening sessions and has the HPV vaccination.

90,000 Cervical Cancer Screening in Florida | Pap Test

Cervical Cancer Screening in Florida | Pap test | WCF

Women’s Care Florida provides a comprehensive cervical cancer screening program for women of all ages.

What is cervical cancer screening?

Cervical cancer screening is a test for detecting changes in the cells of the cervix that can lead to cancer.Pap smears and HPV tests are two types of screening tests that help prevent or detect early cervical cancer. The Pap test looks for precancerous cells on the cervix, and HPV tests look for the human papillomavirus, which can cause abnormal cells to form on the cervix. If you have a Pap test, the cells are checked to see if they look normal, and an HPV test checks the cells for HPV. The cells are sent to a laboratory for further testing.

Screening test results

It can take up to three weeks to get test results. If you have a history of cervical cancer, HIV, a weakened immune system, or abnormal screening results, you may need an additional screening test.It is important to check with your doctor to understand what to do next, depending on your specific situation.

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Cervical cancer screening test in Florida

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90,000 Pap smear recommendations: changes in cervical cancer screening

By: Women’s Care Florida Staff

During your annual check-up, you may be asked to have a Pap test. Doctors do tests every couple of years to make sure you don’t have cervical cancer.A Pap test collects tissue from the cervix and checks for any abnormalities. Early detection of cervical cancer leads to better results. In the past, the recommendation for getting a Pap smear was to get one every five years along with an HPV test. However, these rules have changed recently.

Changes to recommendations for taking a Pap smear

A recent change in the recommended screening for cervical cancer has been controversial. Many healthcare organizations, health advocates and healthcare providers disagree with the change.In September 2017, the US Preventive Services Task Force issued a draft recommendation that states:

USPSTF recommends screening only every 3 years by cervical cytology [Pap smear] or every 5 years only with testing for high-risk human papillomavirus (hrHPV) in women aged 30 to 65 years.

In addition, the recommendation to use only one of the two screening methods is a change from the previous recommendations of the Task Force.In addition, in 2012, the USPSTF recommended that women between the ages of 30 and 64 have HPV and Pap tests every five years. However, many major medical organizations still recommend both tests. These include the American Cancer Society, the American College of Physicians, and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

According to a recent NPR article, simplifying screening for cervical cancer can lead to a missed diagnosis. This is especially true among at-risk groups.Additionally, the article says:

“A proposal to simplify screening for cervical cancer could result in some cancers being left out,” say researchers and patient advocates. And this can be especially true for minority women. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Latin and black women already have the highest incidence of cervical cancer in the United States, and more than half of women with the disease did not get screened within five years of being diagnosed. “

Our recommendations for screening for cervical cancer

At Women’s Care Florida, we are following current guidelines for cervical cancer screening for women at low risk. Depending on your risk factors, your doctor may recommend more frequent examinations. In addition, women who have an abnormal cervical cancer screening result, have a history of cervical cancer, HIV, or a weakened immune system may need additional screening.

If you:

Under 21 You don’t need screening
Age 21 to 29 Pap smear every 3 years with possible HPV depending on specific Pap test results.
Age 30-64 Pap smear and HPV (co-testing) every 3–5 years; or only a Pap smear every 3 years.
Over 65 years of age or after hysterectomy You no longer need screening if all of your recent Pap tests were normal.

Consult your obstetrician / gynecologist for advice on the type and frequency of cervical cancer screenings that are best for your age. Find a doctor now at Women’s Care Florida.

90,000 indications for prescription, features of the conduct and preparation for the study

A smear for diseases of the urogenital sphere is one of the most common and informative methods of analysis in modern medicine.With its help, it is possible to identify not only “banal” inflammations, but also to prevent the development of oncological diseases. Despite the reliability and availability of the method, not all women are aware of the need for regular visits to a gynecologist and for tests, and often turn to a doctor only in advanced cases.

Indications for the appointment of smear analysis in women

Every woman, at least once in her life, visiting a gynecologist, took a smear for microflora or latent infections. A smear is taken from the walls of the vagina, cervical canal and cervix.In what cases is smear analysis needed in women?

Microscopic examination of cells contained in biological material is carried out in laboratory conditions. This analysis allows to assess the state of the epithelial cells of the uterus and vagina, to identify pathogenic microorganisms and sexually transmitted diseases, and research is also necessary to control the quality of the treatment. It is advisable to have a regular smear, even if the woman has no visible cause for concern, since many infections may not cause any symptoms for a long time.

A smear is prescribed without fail in cases where a woman complains of itching and burning in the genital area, unusual discharge from them, an unpleasant odor, sudden pain in the lower abdomen. Typically, these signs indicate the presence of a disease that can only be diagnosed with a smear test. In addition, it is advisable to conduct a study of the biomaterial in the event that a woman has had unprotected contact with a little-known partner and is at risk of contracting an infectious sexually transmitted disease.

Also, a gynecologist prescribes a mandatory smear test for women planning a pregnancy, preparing for IVF or other artificial insemination (ART) procedures. In women expecting a baby, smear analysis is performed three times throughout the entire period, since infections can be transmitted from mother to child, complicate childbirth or cause miscarriage.

Types of smear analysis

In gynecology, there are several types of smear analysis, depending on the type of examination [1].

  1. The most common is a smear for flora, or general smear , with which the doctor determines the so-called cleanliness of the vagina in a woman. What does the study show? This method can determine the state of epithelial cells and identify the presence of diseases caused by pathogenic microorganisms, such as vaginitis, candidiasis (thrush), vaginosis, cervicitis.
    As a result of the bacterioscopic examination, some sexually transmitted diseases are also diagnosed – gonorrhea, trichomoniasis.The analysis is based on the ability of different microorganisms to stain in different colors, depending on the degree of resistance to antibiotics. This ability was discovered by the Danish scientist GK Gram. As a result of staining the biomaterial, gram-positive (gram +) microorganisms are detected, which have a greater sensitivity to antibiotics, and gram-negative (gram-), which are distinguished by a thinner and more complex shell and low sensitivity to drugs.Gram-negative microorganisms can cause various diseases of the female genital area.
    During the analysis under a microscope, a laboratory assistant doctor counts the number of differently colored microorganisms, leukocytes, determines the shape of bacteria, their size and location. In some cases, unstained (native) smears are examined, which makes it possible to detect flagellated forms of Trichomonas. In addition, as part of a smear on flora, so-called microflora inoculation can be carried out. It is used in cases where the causative agent of the disease, due to its low concentration, cannot be detected under a microscope and to determine the genus and species of bacteria.In this case, a biomaterial taken from a woman’s genitals is placed in a special nutrient medium based on gelatin and after a certain time the result is studied.


    Duration of sowing cultivation depends on which microorganism is to be detected. Sowing with chlamydia ripens the longest – 15 days.

    The appearance of colonies of microorganisms on the nutrient substrate indicates the presence of a disease.The inoculation method is also used to determine the treatment strategy, since during the maturation of the colony, it is possible to find out which groups of antibiotics it is particularly unresponsive to.

  2. Smear for latent infections . Latent infections include a group of diseases that can be asymptomatic for several months or even years, causing complications, and in some cases even infertility. To date, the most reliable way to detect latent infections is the study of a smear using PCR (polymerase chain reaction) [2].This method is used to diagnose infections not found in general smears. For the analysis, a secret is taken from the cervix, vagina or urethra and a multi-stage increase in the concentration of nucleic acid and copying of individual DNA fragments of microorganisms present in the smear is performed. As a result, the doctor can establish the species and generic affiliation of all pathogenic bacteria and their ability to cause the development of diseases. In most cases, PCR analysis is used when there is a suspicion of the presence of sexually transmitted diseases that have an almost asymptomatic course in the early stages.The advantages of the method are:
    • high accuracy in determining the infectious agent;
    • the ability to determine the presence of a virus, and not the products of its vital activity or decay;
    • Possibility of making an accurate diagnosis based on just one cell of the microorganism.


The PCR method does not give false positive results, in other words, there are no positive samples where there is no infection.

  1. A smear for oncocytology, or Papanicolaou test (pap test) , allows you to detect the presence of cancer in the cervix in the early stages and start therapy on time [3]. Pap test detects most inflammatory diseases, epithelial dysplasia and malignant tumors. This smear is recommended annually for all women between the ages of 21 and 65. If a woman has menstrual irregularities, inflammation of the cervical canal, infertility, most likely, the doctor will prescribe a smear for oncocytology without fail.It is also recommended to undergo a pap test when diagnosing diabetes, second or third degree obesity, during pregnancy planning, when taking hormone-containing drugs and the presence of genital herpes and papilloma viruses in the body.
    When analyzing a smear, you can get five types of results , depending on the presence and degree of pathology. The first type is a negative indicator, indicating that there are no abnormalities in the woman’s body and she is completely healthy.At the second type of is an inflammatory disease requiring treatment. The third type indicates the presence in the epithelium of single cells with an abnormal structure of the nucleus. The fourth type – suspicion of malignant formation or erosion of the cervix, genital herpes, human papillomavirus infection, parakeratosis. The fifth type – the presence of an oncological disease that requires immediate treatment. It should be remembered that the smear shows only the degree of cell change, but not the cause that caused them.Other tests, including biopsy, colposcopy, and histological examination, are needed to make a diagnosis.
    If abnormal cells are found in the smear, then the conclusion will be written about this, and the type of changes will also be indicated. If there are no special notes in the deciphering of a smear for cytology, this indicates that no pathologies were found during the study.

Preparation for examination

When choosing a day for taking a smear, you need to take into account the menstrual cycle [4].It is advisable to take an analysis before the onset of menstruation or a few days after its end (the optimal period is the fifth day of the cycle) in order to avoid blood entering the smear. Although the procedure for taking a smear is not overly complicated, there are still some additional steps to be taken in advance to ensure a clean result. How can a woman prepare for a smear test?

  1. Do not use vaginal suppositories, tampons, ointments before testing.
  2. Refuse douching.
  3. In the presence of an inflammatory disease, accompanied by abundant secretion, it is necessary to first treat and take a smear only after complete recovery.
  4. Refrain from sexual intercourse for one or two days before taking the test.
  5. Do not use intimate hygiene products the day before or on the day of the procedure.
  6. Refrain from emptying the bladder shortly before taking a smear.

Otherwise, a woman can lead a normal life: no restrictions on nutrition or physical activity are required.

How a smear is taken from women

Taking a smear from a woman for flora, for latent infections and for oncocytology is somewhat different.In all cases, before the procedure, the woman undergoes a general gynecological examination on a chair using a mirror.

With a smear on the flora, after a visual assessment of the walls of the vagina, the doctor uses a special sterile spatula to take material from three areas: the vagina, the cervix and the external opening of the urethra. In some cases, the capture is made only from the first two sites. Then the material is spread evenly over a sterile slide with a wide smear.The application of the material with a drop, a thick layer or a small smear is considered incorrect, since it complicates the work of a laboratory assistant. In this case, materials from different areas should be applied to the glass separately from each other. On the back of the glass, the doctor makes notes about the place of taking the smear: U – urethra, V – vagina, C – cervix. After that, the glass is dried and sent to the laboratory for research.

When taking a smear in women for latent infections and oncocytology, the material is taken with a special brush or with the help of special sterile cotton swabs.Before taking the material, it is imperative to remove mucus, since its presence can give a false result. Since most microorganisms are intracellular parasites, their accurate detection is possible only by examining scrapings from the walls of the genital organs. When analyzing for latent infections, the material from the brush is placed in a physiological solution stored in the refrigerator. A smear for oncocytology is applied to a glass slide and dried.

As a rule, the procedure for taking a smear for a woman is practically painless.When taking the material with a tampon or brush from the cervix, a slight painful sensation may occur, which disappears immediately after the end of the manipulation. A smear for oncocytology can sometimes cause minor spotting within two to three days. If there is severe bleeding, fever, abdominal pain, then an urgent need to consult a gynecologist, since such symptoms are not the norm.

What smear analysis shows in women: interpretation of results

After a smear analysis, the patient receives results that completely depend on the type of examination.

When decoding the analysis of a smear for flora, it is necessary to know the indicators of the norm:

  • Squamous epithelium (ep.) – in a healthy woman, this indicator should not exceed 15 cells in the field of view. A larger number of them indicate an inflammatory process, and a smaller number – about the presence of hormonal disorders.
  • Leukocytes (L). The normal amount in the vagina is no more than 15, and in the cervix no more than 30 units.
  • Dederlein sticks , providing the normal microflora of the female genital organs.In a smear of a healthy woman, they should be present in large quantities, since their deficiency indicates a disturbed vaginal microflora.
  • Mucus should be present in the smear in moderation. Excessive mucus is a sign of inflammation or infection.
  • Fungi of the genus Candida, gonococcus, Trichomonas should not be detected in the smear. Their presence indicates a disease.

In addition to these indicators, the analysis can indicate one of four degrees of vaginal cleanliness.Only the first and second degrees are normal, the third and fourth are a sign of genital tract disease.

The results of smear analysis for latent infections can be obtained one or two days after delivery. In some cases, they may be ready right on the day of the procedure.

It is not difficult to interpret a smear test for latent infections, usually the result is simply indicated opposite the name of a particular infection – positive or negative. Nevertheless, only a doctor should decipher any analysis and prescribe treatment; the patient’s initiative in this case is unacceptable.

A swab for infection in most cases is a fairly reliable diagnostic procedure. With its help, it is possible to identify many serious diseases, while the cost of the analysis is quite affordable even in private clinics.

All information related to health and medicine is presented for informational purposes only and is not a reason for self-diagnosis or self-medication.

When do I need a smear?

Pap smear

A Pap test, also called a Pap test or a cervical smear, checks for abnormal cells in the cervix.Pap smears can also identify vaginal infections and inflammation. They are mainly used to screen for cervical cancer.

For many decades, cervical cancer has been the leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States. The incidence of cervical cancer has dropped 60 percent since Pap smears became available in the 1950s.

When cervical cancer is detected early, there is a much greater likelihood of a cure.The experts have set a schedule for when and how often you should have your Pap smear.

When do I need to have a smear?

The US Department of Health and Human Services, FDA has provided the following guidelines for women who have no known risks.

Age Stroke frequency
<21 years old, not needed
21-29 Every 3 years
30-65 every 3 years; or HPV testing every 5 years, or Pap test and HPV testing together (called co-testing) every 5 years
65 and older talk to your doctor; You no longer need Pap smear tests

What if I had a hysterectomy?

Ask your doctor if you need to continue with Pap smears.Tests can usually be stopped if your cervix was removed during a hysterectomy and you have no history of cervical cancer.

Preparation for Pap smear

To improve the accuracy of your Pap smear, there are several things you should avoid in the 48 hours prior to the test. These include:

  • having sex
  • douching
  • using tampons
  • using vaginal lubricants or drugs
  • using vaginal sprays or powders

Also, you should not have a Pap test when you are on your period.

Q&A: Pap smears and pregnancy


Do I need a Pap smear during pregnancy? Is it safe to receive?


It’s safe. In fact, there are studies that show no link between a positive HPV Pap test and obstetric complications. A Pap smear is recommended during pregnancy. This is usually done early in pregnancy, so if any abnormality is found, the best treatment can be determined.

Hormonal changes associated with pregnancy may interfere with the test and cause abnormal results. It may be helpful to have an HPV test in addition to or as an alternative to a Pap smear.

If you need a Pap test and are pregnant, you may have up to 24 weeks. After the sixth month and until 12 weeks after birth, you should not have a Pap smear. During the last three months of your pregnancy, the Pap test can be uncomfortable.After birth, you may get unreliable results due to a lack or presence of inflammatory cells after birth.

Healthline Medical TeamThe answers represent the opinions of our medical experts. All content is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice.

What happens during a Pap test?

When you have a Pap test, you will be asked to sit back on the examination table with your knees raised. You will place your feet in the stirrups located on each side of the table.You will need to lower your bottom to the end of the table.

Your doctor will place a metal or plastic speculum in your vagina to keep it open. They then use a tampon to lightly scrape off some of the cells and mucus from the cervix.

Most women do not experience pain during the test, but you may feel a slight tingling or pressure.

Your doctor will send your samples to a laboratory for examination under a microscope. Your doctor may also order a test for the human papillomavirus (HPV).HPV tests are used for women age 21 and older who have had abnormal Pap smear results and for women age 30 and older.

Smear Results

Pap smear is intended for screening, which warns of the need for further examination. This is considered a reliable test. A 2018 study found that regular Pap smear screening detected 92 percent of cervical cancers.

However, there are cases of false negative and false positive results as indicated in a 2017 study.

Most Pap tests return as normal. This means that you have been given full clearance and must continue to follow the recommended schedule for future tests. You may hear these results as a “negative” test. This means that you have tested negative for deviations.


Occasionally, Pap smear test results are returned as unsatisfactory. This is not necessarily a cause for alarm.This can mean several things, including:

  • Insufficient cervical cells were harvested for an accurate test
  • cells cannot be scored due to blood or mucus
  • Error in test administration

If your results are unsatisfactory, your doctor may want to repeat the test right away, or you may return earlier than usual for retesting.


Getting results that your Pap test is abnormal does not necessarily mean you have cervical cancer.Instead, it means that some cells were different from other cells. Abnormal results generally fall into two categories:

  • Low changes in your cervical cells often mean you have HPV.
  • High quality changes may indicate that you have had HPV infection for a longer period of time. They can also be precancerous or cancerous.

Cervical cancer

When changes occur in the cell structure of your cervix, which is the lower part of the uterus that connects to your vagina, they are considered precancerous.These precancers can usually be removed in the doctor’s office using liquid nitrogen, an electric current, or a laser beam.

In a small percentage of women, these precancerous diseases will grow rapidly or in large numbers and form cancerous tumors. If left untreated, cancer can spread to other parts of the body.

Nearly all cases of cervical cancer are caused by various types of HPV. HPV is transmitted through vaginal, oral, or anal sex.

HPV infection is very common.

It is estimated that the chance of contracting HPV at some point in life if you have at least one sexual partner is more than 84 percent for women and 91 percent for men. You can get infected if you have only had one sexual partner. You can have an infection for years without knowing it.

Although there is no cure for infections with the HPV types that cause cervical cancer, they usually resolve on their own within one or two years.


Many women do not have symptoms of cervical cancer, especially pain, until it progresses to a more advanced stage.Common symptoms include:

  • vaginal bleeding when you are not on your period
  • heavy periods
  • unusual vaginal discharge, sometimes foul-smelling
  • painful sex
  • pelvic or back pain
  • pain when urinating

Risk factors for developing cervical cancer

Certain factors increase the risk of cervical cancer. This includes:

  • smoking
  • HIV
  • weakened immune system
  • have family members diagnosed with cervical cancer
  • Your mother took the synthetic estrogen diethylstilbestrol (DES) while pregnant with you
  • having been previously diagnosed with precancerous or cervical cancer
  • have multiple sexual partners
  • Being sexually active at an early age

Important tests for women

In addition to Pap smears, there are other tests that are important for women.

Test / Screening Age 21 to 39 40 to 49 50-65 65 and older
cervical swab test first at age 21, then test every 3 years every 3 years; every 5 years if you also have an HPV test every 3 years; every 5 years, if you also have an HPV test talk to your doctor; if you are at low risk you can stop testing
breast examination monthly self-examination after 20 years annually by a doctor; monthly self-examination annually by a physician; monthly self-examination annually by a physician; monthly introspection
mammography discuss with doctor every 2 years times a year 65-74: annually; 75 years and older: Discuss with doctor
Bone Mineral Density Test Discuss With Doctor Discuss With Doctor Discuss With Doctor At least one test as baseline
colonoscopy discuss with doctor discuss with doctor first test at 50, then every 10 years every 10 years

Sources: Office of Women’s Health and Cleveland Women’s Clinic.

Your doctor may recommend additional tests or other times, depending on your medical history. Always follow your doctor’s recommendations as they are most familiar with your health needs.

90,000 Pap test. What is a dad test. Complications and limitations


Pap smear, Paptest, Pap test, Pap smear.


The method of morphological analysis is based on the study and assessment of cellular material.


Identification of morphological features of cells that characterize a specific pathological process.


Screening of cervical cancer (see section “Cervical dysplasia”).


During the day before the study, douching and use of vaginal preparations should not be performed. It is desirable to abstain from sexual intercourse for 1-2 days before the study.You can not take material for research during menstruation.


Material for research: scraping from the cervical canal and from the surface of the ectocervix. To obtain the material, the following tools are used: Eyre’s spatula (for taking smears from the surface of the ectocervix), Volkmann’s spoon, screen, endobranche (for taking endocervical smears, etc.). For optimal cytological results, samples should be collected separately from the ectocervix and from the endocervix.The sampling is carried out prior to the bimanual examination. After examining the cervix with the help of mirrors without preliminary treatment, the surface of the pathologically altered area or the surface of the ectocervix around the external pharynx is slightly scraped off. Taking material from the cervical canal is carried out after removing the mucous plug. One thin uniform smear is prepared from the obtained material along the entire length of a clean, dry glass slide and fixed by air drying. The dried smear is marked.


  • First class – no atypical cells, normal cytological picture.
  • Second class – a change in the morphology of cellular elements caused by an inflammatory process in the vagina and / or cervix.
  • Third class – single cells with abnormalities of the cytoplasm and nuclei.
  • Fourth class – individual cells with clear signs of malignancy: an increase in nuclear mass, cytoplasmic abnormalities, changes in the nucleus, chromosomal aberrations.
  • Fifth grade – a large number of atypical cells are observed in the smear.

In practical work, it is advisable to use modern standardized conclusions of the main types of this classification or cytological conclusions corresponding to certain histological diagnoses.

In 1989, a working group of the National Cancer Institute, meeting in Bethesda (Maryland, USA), proposed a two-stage system for assessing the results of cytological research, later called the “Maryland” or “Bethesda” system.The similarity of clinical manifestations, the results of cytological and molecular biological studies, as well as the same treatment tactics made it possible to combine coylocytosis (see the section “Papillomavirus infection of the genital organs”) and CIN I and classify them as a low degree of PIP. For the same reasons, CIN II, III, and carcinoma in situ were classified as high PIP. Unclassified atypical squamous epithelial cells, according to the Maryland system, include cells that do not meet the criteria for changes in one or another degree of malignancy.This category does not include atypical cells that have arisen against the background of inflammation, atrophy or repair, since they are considered benign according to the Maryland system.

Standardization of cytological results facilitates comparison and reduces the likelihood of diagnostic errors. In addition, in recent years, methods of repeated cytological screenings have been used to improve the efficiency of the cytological method. In particular, three new methods for improving the informativeness of Pap smears have been approved: computer rescreening of negative Pap smears, Pap test in solution, and an autocytological system.When performing a Pap test in a solution, smears are taken with the help of brushes and immediately placed in a special solution in a test tube, which is sent to the laboratory, where the smear is prepared. Before applying the cells to the slide, the solution is shaken and filtered, i.e. one layer of epithelial cells is subjected to microscopy. An increase in the accuracy of cytological diagnostics when performing this technique is achieved by overcoming all the errors associated with the preparation of a smear.

The principle of the autocytological system is automated computer differential diagnosis of Pap smears.The scanned cells, which have undergone preliminary dispersion and centrifugation in order to separate blood and other components from them, are compared with the standards stored in the computer memory for various morphological characteristics. As a result, the reliability of the diagnosis is significantly increased and the proportion of false-negative results of cytological research decreases.

When establishing a cytological diagnosis of CIN or cancer (3–5 grade of Pap smears or high-grade PIP according to the Maryland system), an in-depth study is necessary – colposcopy and biopsy of the cervix with curettage of the mucous membrane of the cervical canal.With an inflammatory type of smear (grade 2 Pap smears, low-grade PIP, or the presence of unclassified atypical squamous epithelial cells according to the Maryland system), a re-examination after debridement is indicated, as well as HPV typing.


The method makes it possible to assess the structure and cellular level of tissue damage in the smear. Cytological criteria are based on the severity of signs of cellular atypia, of which there are more than 80, but only 10 of them are the most constant.

The cytological method is highly reliable – the indicator of early cytological diagnosis of precancer and early stages of cervical cancer is approximately 80%. However, method errors ranging from 5% to 40% cover both harmless viral proliferation and true precursors of cancer. Negative cytological data do not exclude the presence of microcarcinoma of the cervix, therefore, each patient, when localizing a pathological focus on the vaginal part of the cervix, must perform a targeted biopsy and curettage of the mucous membrane of the cervical canal.


  • Non-observance of material sampling technique.
  • Technical errors associated with the preparation of the drug.
  • Qualification of a pathologist.


VIA screening test (visual inspection with acetic acid – visual assessment of the ectocervix state after treatment with acetic acid) with subsequent immediate cryodestruction of identified pathological foci was recognized as a worthy alternative to cytological screening for countries with low and medium levels of economic development.For detecting CIN II and more severe lesions of the cervix, the sensitivity of the VIA screening test is 71%, and the specificity is 74%.

In order to prevent, early detection of cervical cancer, screening should be carried out regularly. Previously, it was recommended to carry out such preventive measures at least once a year, but modern advances allow an increase in this period. Various tests are part of the screening, among which the PAP test is the most popular.

Modern screening program for cervical cancer in Russia – every woman should know this!

An innovation in testing for the ailment in question was published in Obstetrics & Gynecology last November.The author of the article is the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which has laid out algorithm, principles of screening for cervical cancer.

The age of a female representative directly influences the indications for screening:

  1. Survived an operation to transplant internal organs, had other manipulations, which negatively affected the immune capabilities of the body.
  2. During the prenatal period, received a certain dose of diethylstilbestrol, a synthetic substitute for the female hormone that was popular in the 70s.
  3. are HIV positive.
  4. In the history of which there is information about the treatment of moderate, severe forms of dysplasia, cancer.
  • From the age of 30 to 65, it is recommended to have a PAP test + HPV test every five years. If there is no opportunity to carry out testing for the detection of human papillomavirus, you can get by with one PAP test, which is not welcome among doctors. Such a survey should be carried out every three years.
  • Women after age 65 do not need screening.If, before reaching this age, dysplasia (moderate, severe), adenocarcinoma took place, the need for screening will be relevant for 20 years.
  • There is no need for cervical screening after surgery in which all reproductive organs have been removed.

Vaccination against papilloma virus does not affect the frequency of screening.

Human papillomavirus is widely known among women, due to its frequent diagnosis in a particular patient, but often it does not provoke cancer.

The danger appears in those situations if HPV has acquired a chronic form

. In the presence of cells in the female body that are capable of being reborn into cancerous ones, it takes years to establish invasive cancer.

Double testing every five years favors balancing between timely elimination of low-frequency manifestations of cancer and relatively dangerous medical procedures
(for example, the collection of substances for study). The innovations state that screening, as a surgical manipulation, is needed in the presence of highly oncogenic groups of the human papillomavirus.

Although the need for an annual PAP test has disappeared, visits to the gynecologist should not be ignored

. In addition to the ailment under consideration, there are many other diseases that need to be eliminated in a timely manner.

Pap test, as an analysis for cervical cancer – results, transcript of the Pap test

The relevance of regular preventive measures in the aspect of the disease under consideration lies in the high chances of its elimination if detected at early stages.Cervical cancer is a common disease among the female population aged 16 to 53 years.

Thanks to regular developments that improve the screening system, early detection of this ailment is not a problem.

The disease in question arises against the background of transformations of the epithelium, which are of a precancerous nature. Such changes in the cervical tissue are called dysplasias (CIN)
. Often, the development of the disease takes place in the docking zone of flat and glandular matter.The first covers the external component of the neck, the second – the cervical opening.

If no measures are taken to eliminate dysplasia, the latter will progress from mild to moderate stages, from moderate to severe
. This phenomenon requires control by the gynecological oncologist. By means of a screening program, it is possible to detect and eliminate these changes until the moment before the cancer begins.

The effectiveness of screening is directly proportional to its regularity. One of the most productive components of this procedure is the PAP test.The latter provides for the preliminary taking from the patient of a sample of cellular substance on the surface of the cervix.
, which is carried out during a gynecological examination.

For this procedure, the doctor uses a vaginal speculum, a glass slide, medical brushes, a spatula. Using a medical brush, the extracted material is placed on the glass, after which it is delivered to the laboratory.

Thanks to the staining of cells in various dyes, it is possible to trace the transformations that have taken place in the nuclei and cytoplasm of microcells.Initially, the nature of the changes is studied in the laboratory: malignant, infectious, progressive. Then the analysis of those phenomena that exist is carried out.

Test results have several variations:

  1. negative
    – cells have standard parameters, precancerous condition does not take place;
  2. positive
    – there are errors in the aspect of the parameter of the tested cells. In this case, you should not panic: the indicated result is not a guarantee of the presence of cancer.There may be several options for an abnormal result. The algorithm of actions for a particular result exists:
  • ASCUS.
    This concept denotes microcells that are not standard for the cervical tissue. They often arise against the background of inflammation in the specified part of the body. They can be eliminated by eliminating the inflammatory process. Patients with this result should have a new PAP test six months later. As an alternative option, an HPV test, colposcopy is suitable;
  • ASC-H. One of the options for atypical transformations of cervical cells, which are characterized by a flat shape. To confirm / exclude large-scale lesions of microparticles of the cervix, a colposcopy + biopsy is required;
  • LSIL.
    There are minor errors in the aspect of the structure of the cervical epithelium. Such defects arise against the background of the spread of HPV, which provoked mild dysplasia. In this case, female individuals should duplicate the PAP test (after 5-6 months), or undergo colposopia + biopsy;
  • HSIL. This result means moderate / severe dysplasia, carcinoma, is present. In rare cases, regression of these atypical phenomena may occur, but often such changes favor the formation of cancer. To study in more detail the nature of the lesions, a colposcopy with a biopsy is needed.

After passing the biopsy, depending on the results obtained, the doctor determines the further scheme of action:

  1. Biopsy is normal. This means that there are no errors in the structure of the cervix, the patient is prescribed a repeated PAP test in a year.
  2. CIN I.
    Errors are present, but they are insignificant, often self-liquidate without medical assistance. Female representatives are offered to duplicate the PAP test after six months / carry out colposcopy + biopsy.
  3. CIN II / CIN III.
    Errors are pronounced and require treatment to eliminate them.Medical manipulation of such a deviation is aimed at removing atypical cells in order to prevent them from turning into cancer.

Women’s health is very important, because not only the condition of the woman herself depends on it, but also her ability to have children in the future. To exclude serious diseases or detect them at an early stage, the Pappanicolaou test is widely used in gynecological practice.

What is it

PAP test is a smear taken by a gynecologist from the epithelium of the cervix and vaginal vaults.This procedure is painless, carried out directly on the examination chair and ends quickly, but at the same time it is able to detect cytological problems at the earliest stages. A smear is taken from the vagina with a special spatula, after which the biomaterial is applied to the glass and sent to the laboratory for research. Specialists study the material taken under a microscope in various ways, but mainly this is the Pappanicolaou staining method.

It is the ease of implementation and the effectiveness that made this analysis a must for all women.This test is able to reveal the slightest changes in the epithelium, thereby determining their tumor or precancerous state. Also, the PAP test helps to determine the presence of pathological microorganisms in the vagina and to assess the state of the mucous membrane according to many criteria.

So, what is a PAP test has been clarified, but what if it is recommended by a gynecologist? Many are afraid of this need, giving rise to thoughts about the presence of a disease. In fact, the use of this test in gynecology is considered common practice.A smear is taken from all women and is necessary for the timely diagnosis of various abnormalities in the body, including the prevention of malignant tumors.

Recommendations for an unscheduled analysis are often given to carriers The fact is that this infection increases the likelihood of cytology at times, which means that it is necessary to check for its presence much more often.

Benefits of the analysis

All of them have already been listed above, but it would be necessary to summarize the information obtained.So what is PAP analysis?

  • conduction speed;
  • painlessness;
  • diagnostic accuracy;
  • availability.

It is also important to know that its results may depend on external factors, therefore, sometimes a second smear is required or confirmation of the diagnosis by other methods.

Serious problems are much easier to overcome at the initial stages of their development, so a timely cytological analysis can sometimes save life.

Scheduled passage

Not taking into account the recommendations of doctors in individual cases, it is recommended to take a Pappanicolaou smear for all women, starting from the moment of entering sexual activity. Some doctors insist that the study should be completed twice in the first two years of sexual activity in order to completely exclude the possible manifestation of the disease. Others believe that the first test should take place no later than three years after the onset of sexual activity. In any case, they all agree that the first analysis should be submitted no later than twenty-one years.Further research without special recommendations should be carried out every three years until the age of fifty. At this age, the likelihood of cytology is reduced and the test can be done every five years. After three analyzes, women no longer need to remember what a PAP is. But do not stop monitoring your health and go to a scheduled appointment with a doctor.

In the case of the following indicators, it is necessary to take tests for the presence of cytology annually:

  • HIV infection in the body;
  • the presence of papilloma virus;
  • past chemotherapy treatments;
  • organ transplants.

The fact is that these disorders of the body’s work increase the risk of neoplasms. It is important to know that not only HIV is transmitted sexually, but also other viruses, such as papillomas, therefore, special attention should be paid to contraception. The PAP test in gynecology helps to timely detect neoplasms of the body and is an effective preventive method for combating cancerous tumors of the female genital organs. It is important not to rely too much only on the results of the analysis, but also to take into account your well-being, since the test is not always able to show the real picture, and additional research is required to confirm the analysis.

Preparation for the test

For the results of the analysis to be as accurate as possible, you should not take biomaterial during the menstrual cycle or exacerbated inflammatory process of the genital organs.

The best time to take a sample is 5 days before your period starts and 5 days after your period ends.

The accuracy of the results is also influenced by:

  • sexual intercourse;
  • douching;
  • vaginal suppositories;
  • local contraceptives.

For the smear to be as truthful as possible, you should abandon the above a few days before taking the test.

Potential consequences

As a rule, the procedure does not cause discomfort in healthy women.

But there are cases when after taking biomaterial:

  • bloody discharge comes out;
  • body temperature rises;
  • there are pains in the lower abdomen;
  • foul odor discharges.

In such cases, consult a doctor immediately.

Getting results

What is a PAP analysis, where and how it is given is described in detail, but how to determine its results? As a rule, the obtained data is deciphered by the doctor, assessing the changes in the cells according to five stages of cytology development. The first stage indicates that the body is completely healthy and does not need treatment. The second stage indicates inflammatory processes that affect the change in the structure of the epithelium.This situation rarely implies cytology, but a specialist may advise additional research. A further degree implies the presence of more significant abnormalities and implies a mandatory re-examination plus analysis for histology. The fourth degree of the development of the disease already implies serious deviations.

In this case, the analysis reveals the presence of malignant tumors, and the doctor must prescribe additional tests and analyzes. Interestingly, in the end, the diagnosis may not be confirmed, so do not immediately panic.The last fifth stage already indicates the presence of cancer cells in large numbers, which were detected by the PAP test. Decoding of the results is available to the patient even before the doctor’s detailed explanations.

Under any circumstances, you should know that the study shows an accurate result only in 70% of cases, in the rest additional confirmation is required. Therefore, do not get upset right away. Always monitor your health, and everything will be fine.

The Pap smear used in gynecology is a simple, painless test that is used to diagnose endometrial and cervical cancer.It is based on the work of George Papanicolaou, who found that cancer cells were exfoliated into vaginal secretions.

Research principle

Every year 500 thousand women fall ill with cervical cancer in the world. Over the past 30 years, the incidence has decreased by more than 2 times. This is largely due to the widespread use of screening cytological studies.

The basis for early recognition of cervical cancer in large populations over the past 60 years is the Pap smear.

What is a Pap test (also called a Pap smear)?

This is an exfoliative cytological procedure with staining of the obtained material. In other words, a Pap smear is a scraping of the tissues of the surface layer of the cervix and examination of the resulting cells under a microscope after processing with special dyes. It is also used to detect cancers of the bladder, stomach and lungs. Any secretions of the body (urine, feces, sputum, prostate secretions), as well as biopsy material, are suitable for him.

However, most often the Pap smear is used to diagnose the initial stages. The material is taken from the transitional zone of the cervix, where the cylindrical epithelium of the cervical canal is bordered by the squamous stratified epithelium lying on the vaginal part of the cervix. The resulting sample is placed on a glass slide, stained and examined under a microscope to detect abnormal or malignant cells.

What does it show?

It detects precancerous and malignant changes (cancer) of the cervix.After a few minutes, the analysis can reveal either her neck at a stage when the tumor is not accompanied by external changes and damage to the surrounding tissues. At this time, the malignant neoplasm is successfully cured. Therefore, the Pap test is recommended regularly for all women over the age of 21.

Liquid cytology-based pap test assists in detection. At the same time, additional research is carried out to identify the DNA of the virus. This pathogen is a major risk factor for cervical cancer.When using the method of liquid cytology, the material is placed not on a glass slide, but in a test tube with a liquid preservative.

A smear for human papillomavirus is prescribed in case of doubt about the results of a cytological study. Both traditional analysis and liquid cytology have equal diagnostic efficacy. Both of these methods can be used in practice.

HPV testing is not performed in women under the age of 30 due to the high prevalence of this infection in this age group.In addition, the infection is often transient, that is, it can disappear.

Although the interpretation of the results largely depends on the qualifications and experience of the doctor, there are objective ways to improve the accuracy of the diagnosis. Thus, special computer programs are being developed. Some clinics re-check some swabs for quality control.

Much also depends on the correct preparation of the woman for the study.

Preparation for test

The analysis is carried out during a routine examination by a gynecologist.The doctor should be informed about the contraceptives and other hormonal medications being taken.

Special preparation for Pap test:

  • refrain from vaginal intercourse for 48 hours before the examination;
  • at the same time, do not use vaginal tampons, do not douche, do not use drugs or contraceptives inserted into the vagina;
  • should be pre-cured if present.

Pap test, in other words Pap smear

What day of the cycle to take the test?

No special restrictions. The only condition is the absence of menstrual or other uterine bleeding. However, the analysis can be taken even during menstruation, however, its accuracy is reduced.

If a woman has bleeding or cervicitis (inflammation of the cervix), this is not a contraindication for the study. These symptoms can be caused by precancerous or malignant tumors that can be found during screening.


For the timely diagnosis of malignant tumors, a simple method is needed that has no contraindications. The Pap test of the cervix is ​​a screening test that allows most women to be examined regularly.

Table. When is the best time to do a Pap test?

Some women have a higher than average risk of developing cancer. They may need more frequent testing.

Risk groups:

  • women infected with HPV or HIV;
  • previous and venereal diseases;
  • patients with weakened immunity;
  • early onset of sexual activity;
  • multiple sexual partners;
  • who had;
  • smoking or drug use.

A Pap test during pregnancy is mandatory to exclude infections and precancerous diseases. He does not carry any danger for the expectant mother and baby.

How is it done?

Used for analysis:

  • gynecological chair and lamp;
  • metal or plastic vaginal dilator;
  • examination gloves;
  • cervical spatula and special brush;
  • test tube or glass slide.

How is Pap smear performed?

The patient is placed on the gynecological chair. Her tailbone should be on the edge of the chair to ensure a good view when the dilator is inserted.

A speculum is inserted into the vagina. It is recommended to warm it up in warm water beforehand for the woman’s comfort. In some clinics, a small amount of a special lubricant is used, if necessary, to facilitate the insertion of the dilator.

The cervical surface should be completely open and well examined by a doctor. It is necessary to visualize the squamous epithelium, the transition zone and the external pharynx. The transition zone is the area where the squamous epithelium is transformed into glandular. HPV affects this area. Therefore, the selection of cells is carried out in this area. In addition, material is taken from the surface of the neck and from the area of ​​the external os.

If necessary, the neck is cleaned of secretions with a soft swab. The material is taken with a spatula or a special brush, turning them around their axis.

Depending on the equipment used, the resulting material is either placed in a special solution, which is in a test tube, or on a glass slide, on which a fixative is then applied and placed in an alcohol solution.

Research is completed within a few minutes. It is painless. After analysis within 5 days, it is better to give up sexual intercourse, use of tampons and douching.

Can I take a bath after the Pap test?

Complications and limitations

Adverse events following a Pap smear are very rare.A woman should be warned of the possibility of weak spotting. This is normal. Another complication is the addition of infection. However, the likelihood of it is very low, since the procedure does not damage blood vessels and uses sterile instruments.

Although the Pap smear is one of the best screening methods, it has its limitations. The sensitivity of one Pap test in detecting cervical dysplasia averages 58%. This means that the existing disease will be found in only half of the women who actually have it.Approximately 30% of women with newly diagnosed cervical cancer had a negative test result.

HPV testing has a higher sensitivity. In the group of women after 30 years, it allows diagnosing dysplasia in 95% of cases. However, in younger women, this analysis becomes less informative.


If the interpretation of the results of the Pap test showed the presence of abnormal cells, the patient is assigned a colposcopy.This study helps to detect precancerous and malignant changes using a biopsy – taking a piece of tissue for microscopic analysis. If a precancerous disease is detected and cured in time, it will save the patient from cancer.

How many days is the analysis done?

The result is ready in 1-3 days, when using automatic analyzing systems, the time for obtaining a result is reduced. In some state clinics, the waiting time for the result is increased to 1-2 weeks.

There are 5 classes of smears:

  1. Normal, no atypical cells.
  2. Cell alteration associated with inflammatory disease of the vagina or cervix.
  3. Single cells with altered cytoplasm or nucleus.
  4. Isolated malignant cells.
  5. Abundant abnormal cells.

The Bethesda classification system is also used. In accordance with it, a low and a high degree of change is distinguished. Low includes coylocytosis and grade I CIN.High includes CIN II, III, and carcinoma in situ. This corresponds to grades 3-5 of smears.

As a result of the analysis, you can see the following designations:

  • NILM – norm, corresponds to 1 class of smear.
  • ASCUS – atypical cells of indeterminate significance. They can be caused by dysplasia, HPV infection, chlamydia, and mucosal atrophy during menopause. HPV testing is required and a repeat Pap test in a year.
  • ASC-H – atypical squamous epithelium arising in CIN II-III degree or early cancer.The tumor occurs in 1% of women with this result. Extended colposcopy is prescribed.
  • LSIL – a small number of altered cells, indicates mild dysplasia or HPV infection. HPV testing is required, and if a virus is detected, colposcopy. A second Pap smear is performed one year later.
  • HSIL – pronounced changes corresponding to CIN II-III degree or cancer in situ. Without treatment within 5 years, cancer will develop in 7% of these patients. Colposcopy with biopsy or diagnostic excision is prescribed.
  • AGC – altered glandular cells that occur in dysplasia and cancer of the cervix and uterine body. An HPV study, colposcopy, curettage of the cervical canal are prescribed. If a woman is over 35 years old and has irregular uterine bleeding, a separate diagnostic curettage is performed.
  • AIS – carcinoma in situ, early stage of malignant tumor. Shown colposcopy, diagnostic excision, separate diagnostic curettage.
  • High-grade SIL – squamous cell carcinoma.
  • Adenocarcinoma is a tumor that develops from the glandular epithelium of the cervical canal.

Benign glandular changes are considered a normal variant in women with a normal menstrual cycle. If there are irregular bleeding, or the patient is in menopause, diagnostic curettage of the endometrium is indicated to exclude uterine cancer.

For any variant of the Pap test, a consultation with a gynecologist is required.

Cytological smear (in other words, Pap smear, Pap test) is an indicator of precancerous and cancerous diseases, various infections in the female genital area.Taking a Pap smear is a simple and painless, albeit unpleasant procedure.

The Pap test can be done at any time when there is no menstruation. Shortly before the test, sexual intercourse, douching, the use of vaginal drugs and contraceptives should be avoided.

How is a cytological examination performed? A swab is taken by an obstetrician-gynecologist during a pelvic exam when a woman is lying in a gynecological chair with her knees raised and her legs fixed.

During examination, to open the vagina, the doctor uses a special mirror, which makes it possible to see the vagina and cervix. The doctor uses a small cervical brush to collect mucus and cells for analysis.

It is customary to take a smear from the surface, from the cervical canal and vaginal vaults. The taken sample is evenly applied to a special glass, fixed and sent to the laboratory for research. While taking a smear, a woman needs to try to relax, then the whole procedure will be painless.If pain occurs, you must immediately inform your doctor.

In medical practice, cellular changes are assessed according to the method of the Greek physician Georgios Papanikolaou.
A cytological examination of the smear is performed. In this method, several stages of the development of pathological processes are distinguished:

  1. Normal cytological picture, abnormal cells are absent.
  2. Cells of the internal genital organs are slightly changed as a result of inflammatory processes.Although this is recognized as the norm, the doctor should make recommendations for a more thorough examination to find out the causes of the inflammation and further treatment.
  3. A small group of cells is present with nuclei that are abnormal.
  4. Cells with enlarged cell nuclei, altered cytoplasm, chromosomal aberrations are found. But even with such malignant cell changes, only a suspicion of cancer is expressed.

At the final (fifth) stage, an accurate diagnosis is already being made due to the large number of cancer cells in the smear.

What does the decryption show?

What does the analysis decryption show?

Negative test results indicate a healthy cervix, while positive test results indicate unhealthy and some abnormality.

Positive results of the Pap test give yeast, gonorrhea, chlamydia, trichomoniasis, human papillomavirus (HPV), which also contributes to the occurrence of genital warts.

The presence of HPV indicates a very high risk of developing cervical cancer.When the infection is healed, the cytological examination should be repeated. This test cannot determine the state of the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries.

When cervical cancer begins to progress, there is vaginal discharge, blood, pain during intercourse, discomfort in the lower abdomen, back pain and swelling of the legs, menstruation becomes profuse.

Colposcopy and biopsy are performed if cancer is suspected. Although the cervix does not have pain receptors, a biopsy is considered an operation and is performed under general anesthesia in a hospital or on an outpatient basis without the use of anesthesia.

It cannot be carried out only in two cases: the process of blood coagulation is disturbed, acute inflammation is present. If cancer is detected in a timely manner, then during a biopsy, you can remove all the modified tissue entirely.

During the taking of a piece of tissue for analysis, it is quite possible to introduce an infection. Complications of biopsy include bleeding both during the operation itself and in the postoperative period. Scars may form on the uterus as a result of surgery. It should be clearly understood that not all abnormal cells are malignant and eventually become cancerous.

Women need to know how often to have a gynecologist and a cytology smear to check for infections and cancer. Doctors on this issue cannot come to a consensus.

In most cases, cancer develops for a very long time, from the beginning to the final stage it can take about 10 years. But there are times when cancer develops quickly. Therefore, the optimal frequency of taking a smear is once every 1.5 years. It should be noted that the older a woman is, the more likely she is to get cancer.But after 50 years, the diagnosis of cervical cancer is made especially often. Even after removal of the uterus or the onset of menopause, a Pap smear should be done.

The following categories of women are at risk of cervical cancer:

  • who frequently change sexual partners;
  • who started early sexual activity;
  • smokers;
  • with a weakened immune system;
  • with viral infections such as HIV, HPV, HSV.

If cervical cancer is confirmed by biopsy, treatment should be started immediately.It should be noted that oncological diseases, including cervical cancer, are the second largest in the world in the number of deaths after cardiovascular diseases.

The United States has recently used the PAPNET and AutoPap computer systems to double-check Pap smears and find cytology errors. It is necessary to start taking care of the health of the genital area, as well as the body as a whole, from a young age.

90,000 What does your back hurt? How to treat it correctly and how you can harm it – Siesta Food Delivery

Why does your back hurt? How to treat it correctly and how you can harm

85% of people complain of back pain.How to treat it correctly and is it possible to get rid of the pain once and for all?

The head of the neurosurgical department of the Scientific Center of Neurology, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor of the Russian Academy of Sciences, President of the National Association of Vertebrological Surgeons Artyom Gushcha reports.

Does your back hurt? You are not alone! Sociological research data show that back pain is the second reason for the disability of the adult population after viral infections.She is born with us (according to neonatologists, 80–90% of children get spinal injuries at birth) and sooner or later overtakes everyone. It is believed that this is a payback for upright walking. Since as a person grows, the load on the “backbone” increases, the existing problems of the spine get stronger, and stress, anxiety, obesity, overload, a sedentary lifestyle aggravate existing problems – and back pain can occur even at an early age.

Attention to patients!
The neurosurgical department of the Scientific Center of Neurology performs endoscopic surgeries of herniated intervertebral discs.

Consultation with a neurosurgeon on the day of treatment (if there is a medical recommendation).
For details, contact tel. +7 (495) 374-77-76 or leave a request

What hurts there?

The vast majority (about 95%) of pain is associated with muscles, ligaments and joints. This is popularly called back pulling. These pains are unpleasant, but not dangerous and in most cases go away on their own in 2-3 days.

3-4% of pain is associated with radiculopathy (radiculitis) – a lesion of the spinal root.It is usually damaged by a hernia. The pains disappear when the swelling caused by the squeezing passes.

1–2% of back pain is caused by trauma or inflammatory diseases of the spine, cancer, diseases of the cardiovascular system or gastrointestinal tract, in which the pain syndrome can spread to the back. This is the most dangerous type of back pain. To exclude such pathologies, be sure to consult a doctor.

You must not hesitate

The main indicator that you need medical help is the regularity of pain.If you get twisted from time to time – most likely, there is nothing wrong. If pain of low to moderate intensity pursues you relentlessly, you cannot hesitate. An urgent need to consult a doctor if the pain is accompanied by a rise in temperature or the pain syndrome increases during treatment.

At home

The most effective remedy is oral anti-inflammatory drugs. Just do not overdo it – they are safe only the first time.With prolonged use, these drugs can cause ulcers and bleeding in the stomach lining. Traditional home treatments – non-steroidal ointments – can only be used as a complementary measure. They are harmless, but ineffective. Wearing a corset also gives relief – fixation relieves the spine, relieves spasms and limits sudden movements. Only the corset should be normal – elastic, not warming up.

If the treatment has not been effective within three days, you should consult a doctor who will block with anti-inflammatory injections.By relieving spasms and relaxing the muscles, the pain goes away immediately and often forever.


Bath and massage under the strictest prohibition. They make the swelling and pain worse.

Apply to chiropractors for advertisements in the newspaper. Manual therapy is an area where there are three hundred charlatans for every specialist. If you really want to find a good doctor, you should contact certified clinics where certified specialists work.

It is important to immediately determine the correct treatment tactics. This should be done by a neurologist or neurosurgeon. It is dangerous to heal your back on your own. 30% of patients in the neurosurgical department have tried home methods of treatment and thus brought themselves to a hospital bed.

Cut or not?

Not long ago, a person diagnosed with a hernia was immediately given a referral for surgery. Today, the operation is performed only if there are indications:

  • persistent pain, not relieved by any pills;

  • disorder of pelvic functions – incomplete emptying of the bladder;

  • weakness and numbness in the leg.

All these symptoms make the operation inevitable, because without it the patient can become disabled.

What are the risks

The risk of surgery, due to which it is postponed or abandoned altogether, is considered by many patients to be highly exaggerated. In neurosurgery, there are technologies that allow you to accurately calculate the effectiveness of the operation and which symptoms will disappear after it and which will remain.

The probability of pain recurrence after surgery does not exceed 1–1.5%.Hernias in other places may indeed appear, but this is not a complication, but a spread of the disease, which is often found in young undisciplined patients. As soon as the pain goes away, they return to their usual way of life: get behind the wheel, resume training. And this is absolutely impossible to do.

Is the osteochondrosis to blame for everything?

Osteochondrosis is a chronic degenerative-dystrophic change in the intervertebral space.All people over 25 have signs of osteochondrosis. It is impossible to avoid osteochondrosis, but you can save yourself from its complications, which cause back pain.

Article from the newspaper: AiF Health No. 52 25/12/2017

Moscow doctors have made recommendations for everyone who experiences back pain

Vertebrologists of the Center for Reconstructive Minimally Invasive Surgery of the Spine of the City Clinical Hospital No. 13 of the Moscow Healthcare Department spent the whole of June conducting free consultations for everyone with back pain.More than 500 residents of Moscow have visited specialists in a month.

– Most often, we were approached by patients with diagnoses such as intervertebral hernia, spinal stenosis, scoliosis, kyphosis, and so on. Within a month, the doctors of our center sent about 60 people for spinal surgeries, and another 40 for additional examinations. Fortunately, surgical interventions are an extreme case, most often the disease can be dealt with by conservative methods: proper therapy and physiotherapy exercises.In the fall, we will continue the practice of open days, all that is needed to get an appointment with our doctors is the results of previous studies: MRI or CT, – notes Professor Muhammad Sampiev, vertebrologist of the city clinical hospital No. 13.

For those who suddenly found back pain, the doctors of the hospital №13 made recommendations – what should not be done in case of back pain:

  • For acute back pain, do not use ointments or solutions with a warming effect.Use anti-inflammatory ointments and gels to relieve pain.
  • Do not take a hot bath or go to a sauna – high temperatures can increase the inflammatory process. Cooling the sore spot is also categorically contraindicated.
  • Avoid sleeping on hard surfaces if the pain is severe.
  • Do not use pain relievers for more than 5 days.
  • Do not attempt to exercise if the pain is severe. Exercise is helpful during pain relief.
  • Do not spend a lot of time in a sitting position. During an exacerbation, it is better to stay in bed.
  • Do not postpone a visit to the doctor or self-medicate – back pain can be a symptom of a number of diseases of both the spine and internal organs.

In the city clinical hospital No. 13, minimally invasive technologies are widely used in spine surgery, that is, operations are performed through small incisions. This is how a herniated intervertebral disc, stenosis of the spinal canal, metastatic lesions of the vertebrae, spinal deformities, etc. are treated.This technology allows patients to recover faster after surgery and return to their normal life.

Open days for patients are regularly held in the capital’s clinics, and the schedule of doctors’ appointments is published in the open days calendar of the “Come in, it’s open!” Project.

what to do in case of acute back pain “

Dr. Ivanov knows what should be in a home first-aid kit, if he suddenly “shot” in the back

Many people, especially in old age, experience the so-called lumbago – a very severe sharp pain in the back, which does not allow to straighten.How to relieve this unbearable pain if the doctor is not around? In his new article, Dr. Alexander Ivanov gives an algorithm of actions for acute back pain and tells what medicines should be in every home medicine cabinet for such a case.

“Many people, especially in old age, have so-called lumbago – a very severe sharp pain in the back, which does not allow to straighten out.”

Photo: pixabay.com


In this article, I do not call for self-treatment, but give practical advice that will help you when you suddenly “shot” your back, and the doctor is not around.


After the onset of acute back pain, give rest to your body, try to move less. During the acute period, movement can increase pain. If your lower back is stuck, lie on your back, bend your knees and place pillows under your knee joints to reduce sciatic nerve tension and pain. Sometimes the “lying on your stomach” position can bring relief, you can also put a pillow under your stomach – this way you will reduce the deflection in the lower back and muscle tension.


To do this, first roll over on your side, bend your knees, bring your legs over the edge of the bed and immediately push your hands off the bed slightly and sit down. The weight of the legs under the influence of gravity helps to sit down without tension in the muscles of the back. The loin is straight. You should go to bed in the same way, but in the reverse order.


To reduce local movement in the back and exacerbate pain, you can use a semi-rigid corset, but not more than three to four hours a day! I recommend keeping it in your home medicine cabinet.

“To reduce pain, you can use anti-inflammatory ointments or pepper plaster”

Photo: pixabay.com


Anti-inflammatory ointments or pepper patch can be used to reduce pain. The latter has proven itself well, it contains a substance from red capsicum – capsaicin, which has a pronounced anti-inflammatory effect.You must first degrease the skin and stick the plaster for 5-7 days.

An alternative to the patch can be an anti-inflammatory ointment, for example, “Diclofenac-gel” or “Fastum-gel”. These ointments and gels must be in everyone’s home medicine cabinet.


If the patch and ointment were not found, you can make a cold compress – apply an ice pack to the painful area. You need to influence the cold for 10 minutes.As practice shows, such a compress is good for pain relief, it can be done several times a day.


To relieve muscle tension in the acute and subacute period of pain, use the Kuznetsov needle applicator or any analogue thereof. It is necessary to act on the painful area for at least 20 minutes in order to obtain a relaxing effect. Place the applicator on a flat and firm surface and lie on top of it. It is desirable that the effect of the needles be directly on the skin, without clothes.The first 3-4 minutes there may be mild discomfort that goes away quickly.

“Everyone in the medicine cabinet should have anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)”

Photo: pixabay.com


Everyone in the medicine cabinet should have anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), for example, Nise, Nimesil, Meloxicam. These medications must be used with caution due to their toxicity and side effects.Follow the instructions and recommendations of your doctor, as there may be contraindications. Medications should be used if, as a result of the above measures, the pain syndrome has not decreased.


In any situation, you should consult a neurologist or osteopathic doctor as soon as possible to find out the cause of the pain and make a diagnosis. Correctly carried out treatment will help to avoid exacerbations in the future.


1.Massage as this will increase the swelling and pain. Light massage is indicated only in the subacute period.

2. Warm up in a steam bath or sauna. Warming up can increase the swelling and pain of sciatica, but if muscle pain is present, it can help relieve it. Since you don’t know the exact cause of the pain, it’s best not to experiment.

3. Move through pain. With inflammation and swelling, movement can aggravate the process and increase pain. Shown bed rest. It is better to take sick leave for two or three days than go to work through pain, and then get a complication.


So, let’s summarize what should be in a home first-aid kit for recurrent back and neck pain:

1. Kuznetsov’s applicator or its analogue (Lyapko, Redox, etc.)

2. Semi-rigid corset.

3. Pepper plaster.

4. Ointment with NSAIDs (Diclofenac, Fastum, Dolobene, etc.).

5. Ice pack

6. NSAIDs (Nimesil, Meloxicam, etc.).

Be healthy!

Sincerely yours,

Ivanov Alexander Alexandrovich – Candidate of Medical Sciences, osteopath, neurologist, naturopath, member of the Russian osteopathic association, popularizer of a healthy lifestyle and a conscious approach to health.

Personal website www.osteopat-ivanov.ru

The opinion of the author may not coincide with the position of the editorial board

Got your back? Do not sleep on hard, do not warm with ointments

Forget the favorite position of the summer resident: bend over the garden bed head down, fifth point up

Photo: Vladimir VELENGURIN

What will help to quickly put the spine and muscles in order, tell the traumatologist-orthopedist, Ph.D. Islam Shahabov and neurologist Galina Stroeva.


1. Do not straighten – do not turn, the whole back hurts. You have overstrained the muscles, or there has been a slight displacement of the vertebrae from excessive exertion.

What to do? Give the muscles rest: do not make sudden movements, put the shovels and buckets aside, lie down. Sitting for a long time with a sore back is harmful – this posture strains the already strained muscles too much. Anti-inflammatory drugs will help relieve pain.The most popular ones are based on ibuprofen (nurofen, brufen), but they do not work well on the stomach, they do not need to be drunk on an empty stomach; or on the basis of nimesulide (nise, nimesulide-teva). If the pain is severe, it is better to use both pills and ointments together. Only one “dauber” will not help, because the focus of inflammation can be deep.

Back pain – not bending or turning.

Photo: Nail VALIULIN

2. Severe back pain . It can last half an hour or several days.Usually arises when something very heavy is lifted abruptly or when it is unsuccessful to turn. In this case, the pain is given to the buttock, thigh and, most disturbingly, if it goes down below the knee or even to the toes. This is the so-called radicular syndrome (aka lumbago, sciatica, sciatica).

What to do? Massage and attempts to “correct” something are simply dangerous and can lead to severe pinching of the nerve. It is necessary to fix the lower back. In this case, it would be good to buy a back corset and wear it during hard work.If not, tie a towel or scarf tightly around the lower back, but not a woolen one. It is undesirable to warm up the muscles, warming ointments will only cause a rush of blood to the inflamed area and can harm. Additionally, test your condition – try walking on your toes or on your heels. Doesn’t it work, does weakness in the foot interfere or don’t you feel the leg at all? It means, urgently to the doctor. If this process is started, then you can bring the leg to paresis (paralysis).

Severe back pain.

Photo: Nail VALIULIN

3.Drawing aching pain in the lower back on only one side. Perhaps you trusted too much in the treacherous May sun, and you were blown away in a draft. A muscle heated by work in the cold becomes inflamed, causing pain and stiffness of movement. Sometimes the temperature rises to 37.5 degrees.

What to do? If the muscles hurt due to hypothermia, then the sore spot can be rubbed with anti-inflammatory ointment.

Drawing aching pain on one side.

Photo: Nail VALIULIN


– Contrary to myths, the bed with a sore back should not be too hard.Our backs are imperfect: some have kyphosis, some have too smoothed curves, others arched. So if you go to sleep on the floor or on planks with a sore back, it won’t do any good for your back. But too soft fluffy mattresses are contraindicated: the lower back should not fall through.

– For back pain, do not use warming ointments (unless it is clearly blown out). When rubbing a spasmodic muscle with such an ointment, blood flows, tissue swelling increases, along with pain.Cold helps the muscles affected by shock work best. The easiest option is to put pieces of ice from the refrigerator in a bag, wrap it with a thick towel and apply such a compress for 10-15 minutes to a sore spot.


Basic rules for a healthy back

– Start with light work to warm up your muscles – it’s like an athlete’s warm-up.

– Do not lift weights with a jerk or in a bent position – in this case, the load on the lower spine increases many times, which can lead to displacement of the vertebrae and the formation of a herniated disc.Lift heavy buckets, bags with a straight back, squatting slightly so that the load falls on the entire back and legs. In the same way, weights should be lowered to the ground.

– Avoid twisting movements: when the legs are in place, and only the body turns. If you get something out of the trunk, step with your feet towards the load. If you are digging a garden, throw the soil out of the shovel to the side, and not abruptly behind your back. With each upward movement of the shovel, straighten your back completely.

– Forget the favorite position of the summer resident: bend over the garden bed head down, fifth point up.So you can “wake up” radicular syndrome (sciatica – inflammation or “clamping” of nerves in the lower back). To work in the garden, get a low bench, in extreme cases, you can work on all fours.

– It gets hot from good work, but do not rush to take off your sweaters and T-shirts – even a slight breeze can cause hypothermia and muscle inflammation. It is better to put on something light right before work, so as not to sweat and not freeze.

Blown back: symptoms and treatment

12 December 2018

The back area often hurts from a sharp temperature drop, after physical activity on the street, from drafts, hypothermia.Inflammation of the muscles (myositis) begins. To prevent this from happening, you must dress correctly and follow safety measures.

Symptoms of myositis

Pain syndrome is the main symptom of back muscle inflammation. The provoking factor is spasm and inflammation. Characteristic features of aching, pulling pain:

  • persistence, lack of relief after rest;
  • strengthening with body movements;
  • does not go away after rest;
  • asymmetry;
  • palpation enhancement;
  • The presence of nodules and swelling in the muscles.

Additional signs include itching, redness, and fever.

Distribution of symptoms:

  1. Buttock from the side of inflammation.
  2. The leg is on the same side.

The nerve endings of the spine become inflamed. Pain in the abdomen when urinating. Women complain of pain in the uterine appendages.


If the proper measures are not taken, the disease can become chronic.You should seek the help of a doctor.


  • Complete rest (warm).
  • Taking painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Use of special gels, taking into account contraindications.
  • Warming up the back with a heating pad, pepper plaster or a bag of dry salt.
  • Using alcohol compresses.
  • Selection of exercises to relax sore muscles.

The patient can be prescribed a course of physiotherapy, for example, muscle stimulation with electrical impulses, as well as therapeutic massage.In the presence of a severe pain syndrome, it is possible to use a novocaine blockade.

Buy medicines to relieve muscle inflammation in the Stolichki pharmacy network at affordable prices.

Back ache and “shoots” in the lower back in your city

Select specialist:

Pediatric dentistOrthodontistTherapistHygienistPeriodontistSurgeonOrthopedistNeurologistPediatrician ENT Pediatric endocrinologist

  • Vostrikova Yulia Valentinovna
    Pediatric dentist-therapist

  • Ponomareva Maria Lvovna
    Orthodontist for children and adolescents

  • Glazyrina Yulia Leonidovna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Pautova Larisa Evgenievna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Shirikhanova Natalya Valentinovna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Shevtsova Yulia Vadimovna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Grebenkina Viktoria Alekseevna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Dubrovina Yulia Evgenievna
    Dentist therapist, pediatric

  • Khimchuk Natalya Sergeevna
    Children’s dentist

  • Sosnina Natalya Eduardovna
    Children’s dentist

  • Kharlamova Anna Yurievna
    Children’s dentist

  • Svetlitskaya Alexandra Nikolaevna
    Dentist-therapist for children, adolescents

  • Strelkova Daria Mikhailovna
    Dentist-therapist for children, adolescents

  • Vekovshinina Evgeniya Viktorovna
    Children’s dentist

  • Rusinova Anastasia Sergeevna
    Children’s dentist

  • Ponomareva Maria Lvovna
    Orthodontist for children and adolescents

  • Davydov Kirill Andreevich

  • Sakhnov Alexander Anatolyevich

  • Goreva Olga Borisovna

  • Mokina (Domashevich) Olga Vasilievna
    Orthodontist for children and adolescents

  • Byakova (Sviridova) Alla Alexandrovna

  • Kostrova Vera Anatolyevna

  • Mkrtchyan Aida Mikhailovna

  • Satina Anna Sergeevna

  • Motyl German Viktorovich

  • Chudinova Irina Viktorovna

  • Shumatova Olga Valerievna

  • Eliseeva Svetlana Yurievna

  • Davydova (Aminina) Ekaterina Viktorovna
    Dentist therapist

  • Ryabkova Olga Borisovna

  • Girsh Irina Leonidovna

  • Chikurova Valentina Anatolyevna

  • Yakovleva Polina Olegovna

  • Kuchukova Gulnara Salimzyanovna

  • Agadullina Yulia Aleksandrovna

  • Yaroslavtseva Elena Pavlovna

  • Pestrikova (Ukraintseva) Tatiana Ivanovna
    children’s hygienist

  • Zelenina Julia Igorevna
    Children’s dentist-hygienist

  • Ivonina Venera Rashidovna

  • Poshibalkina Olga Vladimirovna

  • Girsh Irina Leonidovna

  • Khanzhina Elena Vladimirovna

  • Maistrenko Evgeniy Mikhailovich

  • Alisova Natalya Sergeevna
    pediatric dentist-surgeon

  • Nasibulin Ilya Evgenievich
    Dentist-surgeon, maxillofacial surgeon

  • Yarusova Polina Yurievna
    Pediatric dentist-surgeon

  • Pavlov Sergey Alexandrovich

  • Rogozhnikov Ilya Nikolaevich
    orthopedic dentist

  • Ermakov Denis Valerievich

  • Bystrova Larisa Yurievna
    Neurologist, exercise therapy doctor, rehabilitation specialist

  • Zabolotskaya Alexandra Nikolaevna

  • Kotelnikova Yulia Yurievna

  • Krasnoperova Olga Igorevna
    Pediatric endocrinologist

What to do if lower back hurts?

Low back discomfort can occur for a variety of reasons, from muscle damage and back problems to abdominal diseases.If the lower back hurts, you must first understand the reason – only then the pain can be cured quickly and effectively.

Possible causes of back pain

There are several systems in the lumbar region that can cause pain:

  • Musculoskeletal system . Pain can occur due to a spinal injury or overexertion and damage to the muscles in the lower back.
  • Nervous system . The cause of pain can be curvatures, hernias, protrusions, neuropathies, inflammation of the vertebrae and pinched nerves.The nervous system is the most common cause of back pain.
  • Digestive system . In the lumbar region, pain from the pancreas, stomach, liver, gallbladder and intestines will be given. This is possible with pancreatitis, gastritis, stomach ulcers, poisoning and intoxication, stones in the bile ducts and various forms of obstruction.
  • Excretory and reproductive systems . Lower back pain can occur with diseases of the kidneys and bladder (renal failure, pyelonephritis, urolithiasis, cystitis), lesions of the uterus and ovaries (cysts, fibroids, inflammation).

Which doctor should you go to if your lower back hurts

By the location of the strongest focus of pain, you can determine where the problem is. But all the organs in the abdominal cavity are very close, so the symptoms are often confused, and pain, especially aching and prolonged, can gird the entire body at the level of the waist and tailbone. So if you do not first carry out a diagnosis, you can begin to treat a completely wrong disease. And for this you need to contact the right specialist in time.

  • Traumatologist or Surgeon – if you have recently fallen, injured or played intensively.
  • Neurologist – with acute or shooting pain in the spine, partial loss of sensitivity and mobility, a feeling of creeping on the stomach and legs; if, with long immobility or a change in body position, the pain in the spine increases.
  • Gastroenterologist – with long pulling pain predominantly on one side of the lower back; with pain accompanied by digestive disorders; if lower back pain is accompanied by weakness and fever.
  • Urologist or Nephrologist – with acute pain on one side, as well as with mild aching pain in the lower back against the background of difficult or very frequent urination.
  • Gynecologist – for pain in the lumbar region on one or both sides, accompanied by weakness and aggravated by movement, against the background of pregnancy or menstruation.

You can postpone a visit to a doctor only if you know why your lower back hurts, and this reason does not cause concern.For example, muscle fatigue from physical work will go away in one to two days without any treatment, and for this you do not need to visit a traumatologist.

Possible diagnosis and treatment

The diagnosis your doctor prescribes depends primarily on your symptoms. First, the doctor will conduct an examination and ask about his health, on the basis of which he will be able to understand the approximate cause of the pain. Then, depending on the symptoms, he will direct you to:

  • X-ray of the spine – for injuries, scoliosis and hernia.Only bone tissue is clearly visible on it, so it will be useless for other diseases.
  • MRI of the lumbosacral spine – for hernia and protrusion, neuropathy, curvature, trauma, neoplasms. This is a very accurate type of diagnosis that allows you to examine soft tissues at any depth.
  • CT scan of the lumbar spine – for the same indications, if the patient cannot undergo magnetic resonance imaging.
  • Ultrasound – for suspected diseases of the abdominal cavity or pelvic organs.This is a completely safe examination that can be carried out even for children, but not all pathologies can be considered on it.
  • Gastroscopy and colonoscopy – for diseases of the digestive system. These types of examinations allow you to examine organs and immediately take tissue samples for analysis, if necessary.
  • MRI of the abdominal cavity and intestines – for a more thorough examination of the internal organs and the circulatory system.

Almost all patients who complain of back pain come with problems of the spine and back muscles. A sedentary lifestyle and heavy lifting lead to constant pain in the lumbar region, regardless of age. Therefore, the diagnosis will begin with an examination of the back and spinal column. Well, if no pathologies are visible on the x-ray, the doctor will refer you to an extended examination of the abdominal organs.

Many diseases that cause lower back pain are treated surgically: hernias, neoplasms, stones in the ducts, pancreatitis.In case of unbearable pain, be sure to ask your doctor what analgesics you can take. Diseases of the spine, if they do not require surgery, are treated with anti-inflammatory drugs, physiotherapy, exercise therapy, a balanced diet, chondroprotectors and lifestyle changes. In each case, everything is individual, so let the doctor prescribe the treatment.

How to avoid lower back pain?

A healthy lifestyle and moderate constant movement will keep your back healthy for years to come.Monitor your posture, arrange a comfortable place to sleep. If you have a sedentary job, get up regularly and warm up. And if you do not want to play sports, then just include walking in your mode: for example, to work or from the store.

To avoid diseases of internal organs, you should also monitor your diet and give up bad habits. This is especially true for those who have already been diagnosed with diseases of the stomach, liver, kidneys and pancreas. It is also necessary to monitor clothing so that the body in the lumbar region and small pelvis is always warm.Too cold air can lead to both inflammation of the nerves and diseases of the internal organs.

When lifting weights, keep your back straight and lift using your legs. This will shift the load without damaging your lower back muscles. And, most importantly, do not ignore mild pain if it started for no apparent reason. It is better to visit a doctor and be sure of excellent health than to miss the onset of the disease when it was easiest to cure it.

Here’s how to apply sunscreen on your back without assistance

This annoying mid-back presents a serious dilemma for singles around the world – or indeed anyone who enjoys a solo walk to the beach.Or maybe you and a couple of your brothers are planning to catch some rays, but neither of you wants to rub lotion into each other’s sensitive areas.

Whatever the reason, the problem is universal: no matter how hard you try, the combination of your short arms and SPF 50 does not cope with harsh sunlight … until now. Below you will find some clever ways to rub sunscreen into these tight spots, none of which require asking a gritty, scantily clad stranger if he can “get your back.”

This Fancy Lotion Applicator

Photos: Bed Bath & Beyond
Just accidentally throw one of these roller applicators into your beach bag and you’re golden (not scalded)! The As-Seen-On-TV Roll-On Body Lotion Applicator claims to glide over your skin and release an even layer of product. Its length is 19.5 inches, which should cover the length of most people’s backs.

Youtube / alphan73
Online reviews are mixed: Buyer JOANDUNEDIN from Dunedin, Florida (sunshine, no doubt about it) gives the product a perfect five-star rating.“It works great. SO easy to use and applies lotion to areas you can’t get to !! I LOVE IT”.

MATTM of Michigan, however, considers Roll-A-Lotion a “useless product” that does not deliver. “The plastic balls have seams that cause them to get stuck in their sockets. The lotion won’t come out because the balls don’t rotate. To make matters worse, the seams are sharp and scratch your back when you push harder to make them turn. ”

The product has a retail price of $ 9.99 which means you won’t invest too much if you do choose If you don’t want to risk – or don’t have time to wait for delivery – scroll down and find a few ways you can do it yourself, and they can all be done in the privacy of your own bathroom.• No one will ever have to watch you take a long length alone to ensure an even tan.

Toilet brush + dishcloth

Wrap a toilet brush (new, unused!) In a washcloth. Secure the rag with a rubber band or hair tie. Apply sunscreen to a washcloth. Stand with your back to the mirror and check over your shoulder to make sure you have covered all the points, methodically moving your brush up and down and side to side.

Spatula + dishcloth

Are you afraid of getting bath products on your skin? Fair enough. Try the same method as above, but use a handle spatula; just about any dish with a long handle and a flat surface to apply will work – consider a large wooden spoon, scraper, fly swatter, and even tongs.

Do you have a spare sponge, back washcloth or washcloth?

Follow the same procedure as above but replace the towel with a sponge.

Paint roller method

Youtube / Terri Hall
Lubricate a clean paint roller with lotion and apply evenly to previously inaccessible areas of the skin. Check the mirror to make sure you are covered.

Plastic packaging method

Plastic sheeting is no longer exclusively for deli meats and leftovers. Spray or spray the lotion on the center of the long cut of the plastic wrap and wipe the middle of your back as if you were drying with a towel.Be sure to keep the film wide open so that it covers as much of the surface as possible. Smooth plastic will allow for easier and more lubrication of the skin, which is not enough with dishcloths. You may need to use a couple of pieces to cover your entire back as the plastic can wrinkle and become ineffective.

Yogic Method

Youtube / Bathusha jiffry
Do it on the beach and you won’t be lonely for long: surfers will ride the waves back to shore just for a close up view of your spectacular yoga paths.Cow Face Pose, or Gomukhasana, is a pose that stretches the rotator cuff, upper back, and chest muscles. It also opens the chest and thoracic spine. Become an expert and before you know it, you don’t need a tool to apply lotion to your back.

Note. The most effective way to apply sunscreen is the old-fashioned way – with your hands and, if necessary, with the help of others. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using a waterproof sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher that provides a wide range of coverage.

How to apply suntan lotion on your back

One of the benefits of being in a relationship is to always have someone else rubbing your back with sunscreen, but when you’re single – and if your friends refuse to soap your hard-to-reach places for some reason – you seem to be out of luck. While you can apply kinds of sunscreen, you will basically feel like a T. rex with tiny hands and end up with a bunch of burn spots on your back.

But is a way to lather your back – at least according to wetsuit manufacturer and avid lone beachgoer Alex Wang. His advice:

  • Step # 1: Cut a sheet of plastic wrap 2 feet long. If you don’t have plastic wrap (not necessary for your beach bag), you can use an old beach towel.
  • Step # 2: Apply a zig-zag pattern of sunscreen – as if you were applying mustard to a hot dog – onto a plastic wrap or beach towel.
  • Step # 3: Rub the sunscreen-soaked plastic wrap / towel over your back as if you were drying it with a towel.
  • Step # 4: Let the sunscreen soak for half an hour before dipping into the water; otherwise it will open immediately.

For best results, dermatologist Anthony Rossi recommends using this method in tandem with a product with an SPF of of at least 15 and reapply every two hours in the sun (and after every swim in the pool or ocean)….

Alternatively, you can purchase the fancy Roll-A-Lotion Body Lotion Applicator measuring 19.5 inches – just long enough to keep your back completely covered in sunscreen. The downside is that you will have to put up with the gazes of other beachgoers while you awkwardly smear this thing on your back (and also make it painfully obvious that there is no one in your life to turn to).

This, of course, also applies to the plastic wrap smeared with sunscreen.Either way, this may not be the coolest moment for you.

How to apply lotion on your back: 6 simple methods

There are several problems that people have faced since time immemorial.

We’ve worked hard to master a balanced diet, preventing infections, fighting for world peace – and figuring out how to put lotion on your back.

In most cases, our arms are not long enough to properly lather our backs with moisturizer or suntan lotion.

Fortunately, human ingenuity does not ignore any problem. Here are some of our top tips and tricks on how to apply lotion to your back.

Why do I need to apply lotion on my back?

Lotion is often advertised for the face, hands and feet, as these are the parts of your body most susceptible to drying out. You don’t usually expose your back to the elements, so it can be neglected when planning your daily skin care routine.

But that doesn’t mean your back doesn’t need to be moisturized or protected.Skin is your body’s first line of defense against dirt and bacteria. Any skin needs a moisturizer to stay healthy and nourishing, no matter which part of your body it protects.

The season also affects your back. In winter, you may experience itchy and dry skin from scratched wool sweaters and sweat-wicking shirts.

What’s more, if you plan on spending a full day in the sun, it is doubly important to apply SPF sunscreen lotion to this hard-to-reach area.In the summer, you are more likely to get at least one painful sunburn during the beach season. On the other hand, if you want an even tan all over your body, you also need to make sure that the tanning lotion is evenly distributed over your entire back area.

Regardless of the cause or season, it is helpful to know how to apply the lotion to your back when a helping hand is not available.

How to apply lotion to your back: 6 different methods

When it comes to applying body lotion to your own back, we make sure you have options.All bodies are different.

You don’t have to feel like you need an acrobatics degree to apply moisturizer. Here are six different ways to get the job done.

Use Back Lotion Applicator

If you don’t mind spending a few dollars, you can get a lotion dispenser. Typically, a lotion applicator is a tool that consists of a sponge head attached to a wooden or plastic handle with a non-slip grip.It usually resembles a long dish brush or back massager. There are many lotion applicators available, including the Aquasentials Easy Lotion Applicator, Ableware Roll Easy Lotion Applicator, and SunBuddy.

The correct procedure for using the lotion applicator depends on the product, but in most cases, the process works as follows:

  1. Squeeze the lotion onto a sponge or foam pad.
  2. Lift the lotion applicator over your shoulder.
  3. Rub the applicator head over the back, evenly distributing the lotion.
  4. Rinse off any remaining cream from the applicator to clean it.
Apply lotion to forearms

This is a great technique for those of us with shoulder mobility. It’s simple and doesn’t require special tools or extra-long arms.

  1. Apply a thin strip of lotion to the top of your forearms, from elbow to joints.
  2. Place your hands on your hips, then move them back so that they are behind you, placing your upper arms on your lower back.
  3. Bend your elbows so that your arms move up your back.
  4. Start pressing, gently rubbing the lotion into the upper part of your forearms around your back.

If you find it difficult to use both hands at the same time, try alternating.

Applying lotion to the back with a spatula

Ok, so you can use a special plastic spatula that will only be used for this purpose.If you add any leftover lotion, the food will not be as tasty.

  1. Apply a quarter drop of lotion to the spatula.
  2. Reach for your head as if you are going to scratch your neck and place the head of your scapula in the center of your back.
  3. Starting from the middle of the back, lubricate the lotion up and in all directions until you reach the points you can get with your hands.
  4. Then apply a little more onto the spatula and extend your arm back as if you were unbuttoning a bra.
  5. Starting in the middle of the spine, apply the lotion down and out, covering the middle and lower back.
  6. Using your hands, you can reach the outside of your back and shoulders.
Using Saran Wrap

If you are in trouble and need to moisturize your back, another simple and affordable option is to use plastic wrap. Right! The same product you use to wrap food leftovers can also be used to moisturize your skin.

  1. Cut a long piece of Saransk film using a knife from a box or scissors. The longer the piece of plastic, the better.
  2. Squeeze the lotion into the center of the plastic wrap. Do not overdo it!
  3. Place the plastic wrap on the table and turn your back to it.
  4. Reach behind your back and grasp the plastic wrap at each end.
  5. Place the moisturizer wrap on your lower back and slide it up to distribute the lotion all over the area.
Applying lotion to the back using a paint roller

For those who work with moisturizer but do not have access to an applicator, a small investment in a paint roller may be an option. Using a paint roller will get the job done quickly and efficiently.

  1. Apply a thin bead of lotion along the entire length of the paint roller.
  2. Starting from your lower back, roll a paint roller to the width of your lower back.
  3. Work your way up your back, side to side, until you can no longer reach.
  4. If you need to apply another line of lotion, do so.
  5. Stretch your hand up and over your head and roll the paint roller up and down your shoulder blades and spine.
  6. Change hands to keep the coat flat.
Lotion application through tube toe or wide belt

If you have an old but clean tube sock or belt that you no longer use, you can use it as your own applicator.

  1. Apply a strip of lotion along the entire length of the lotion dispenser.
  2. With both hands, grasp the wide handle and hold it over your head.
  3. Move it to the shoulders behind the head, as a weightlifter holds the barbell while squatting on his back.
  4. At this point, you can grab the attachment again so that one hand is still on your shoulder and the other grips the attachment next to your thigh.
  5. Move the lotion applicator over your back to distribute the lotion evenly.
  6. Change handles to get to the other side.
  7. Feel free to bend and arch your back to a comfortable level for full coverage and good stretch.
Choosing the best body lotion for your back

Besides choosing the optimal method, another important factor is finding the best moisturizer for your back.

We recommend a gentle universal moisturizer that is quickly absorbed by the skin. There is nothing more uncomfortable than putting on a cotton shirt on a sticky back.Public Goods All-Purpose Lotion glows and absorbs quickly into the skin, so you can spend your day in peace.

Best of all, we offer replacement lotions. This option means you don’t have to worry about using too much lotion (since your back is quite a large part of your body) and you can reduce the amount of waste in the ocean caused by plastic bottles.

Pap smear – Return of vision


Pap smear is a preventive measure that detects precancerous or cancerous cells of the cervix.An annual Pap smear is performed as part of a regular pelvic exam. A Pap smear involves collecting cells from the cervix for examination. Early detection and treatment of cervical cancer is associated with good outcomes. Precancerous cells are almost completely curable.

Cervical cancer occurs when cells in the cervix grow abnormally or uncontrollably. The exact cause of cervical cancer is unknown. Certain strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted disease, cause most cases of cervical cancer.A vaccine is available to prevent infection against two types of HPV, which cause most cases of cervical cancer, and two types of HPV, which cause most cases of genital warts.

Annual Pap smear and pelvic exams, which should begin when a woman becomes sexually active or over age 20. Pap smears detect abnormal cellular changes, precancerous cells, or cancerous cells. If your Pap smear results are not normal, your doctor may repeat your Pap smear and perform additional tests.


Pap smear is a short procedure in the office. You should avoid douching, using tampons, and having intercourse in the 24 hours before the test. Schedule a Pap smear when you are not on your period as blood or fluid can interfere with your test results.

During your Pap test, you will lie on your back on the examination table. You will place your feet in the stirrups to position your pelvis for examination.Your doctor will gently insert the dilator to open the vaginal walls. Your doctor will gently scrape off your cervix with small instruments to obtain cell samples. Cell samples are saved and sent to the laboratory for testing.

You may feel mild discomfort or pressure during the test, although many women do not. There is often a slight bleeding after the test. Your doctor will tell you when your test results are available.

Pap smear recommendations

Prevention of Cervical Cancer: Recommendations for Pap smear

Pap smear is a screening test used to look for signs of cervical cancer.The American Cancer Society estimates that 12,820 new cases of invasive cervical cancer will be diagnosed this year. It was once the most common cause of cancer death for women in America, but today it has halved thanks to the use of pap smears.

What happens during a Pap test?

In the examination room, you will be asked to undress before the test. A robe is provided to reduce the impact and make you feel more comfortable.You will lie on your back on the examination table with your knees bent. A speculum is inserted into the vagina to separate the walls and provide an overview of the cervix.

A small brush or spatula is inserted to take a cervical swab. While it shouldn’t be painful, it can be uncomfortable with both sensations and lack of privacy. It only takes a few seconds, then the spatula is removed and the collected cells are spread over a glass slide for examination. Your obstetrician-gynecologist will tell you when and how you can expect results.This process can take several days or longer.

How often should a Pap smear be done?

According to the American Cancer Society, every woman should start having a regular Pap smear at age 21 or older, and it should be completed at least every three years until she is 29, and then every five years starting at age 30 when the HPV test is done. Women who refuse an HPV test should have a Pap smear every three years.

After age 65, women may stop taking Pap tests if they have had regular screenings over the previous decade and have not shown any signs of cancer. Women who have undergone a total hysterectomy may also refuse to have a Pap test if removal was not done as a precancerous treatment. Women with suppressed immune systems should talk with their obstetrician-gynecologist about the recommended screening schedule.

While prevention is preferred, early detection is another best option when it comes to cervical cancer.If you have questions or would like to schedule a Pap smear test, contact the Women’s Health and Menopause Center to make an appointment and this will increase your chances of staying healthy and cancer-free.

What Pap smear results mean

A Pap test, also called a Pap test, detects cancer of the cervix. For the test, your doctor uses a long swab or brush to run along the cervix and collect cells. The laboratory examines the cells.Three outcomes are possible: normal, abnormal, or inconclusive. These are somewhat vague terms that do not provide a complete explanation.

This is what these results actually mean.

A Pap smear checks for any cells that do not appear healthy or normal and may be cancerous. A normal result means that all of the cells in the cervix appear healthy and normal; they are not cancerous.

Good news.However, regular tests are essential. Pap smear results are not always accurate. The test may miss some abnormal cancer cells and indicate that your result is normal. This is a false negative result. Cervical cancer grows slowly. If no cancer cells are found in your Pap smear, they may be found in another Pap smear next year.

There are different types of abnormal results. The test can detect cells that are only slightly different from normal cells in the cervix.They won’t need treatment. The results will show that you have LSIL (low-grade dysplasia). More abnormal or even very abnormal cells indicate HSIL (high grade dysplasia). Another name for this is carcinoma in situ. Over time, these cells develop into cancer.

An abnormal result may also indicate cervical cancer (squamous cell carcinoma of the cervix). This means that abnormal cells have developed into cancer and can infect organs and tissues outside the cervix.This result is rarely seen in women who undergo regular check-ups. This cancer grows slowly. Regular Pap smears should identify cells before they become cancerous.

It is also possible that the Pap test result is incorrect. The result may show abnormal cells when they are not actually present. This is a false positive. Your doctor can tell you if your results are accurate and if more tests are needed. For example, your doctor may want to take a closer look at your cervix using a magnifying device called a colposcope.

Inconclusive results mean some cells are atypical, but there is no clear diagnosis. Your Pap test report will usually indicate that you have one of two types: ASCUS (atypical squamous cells of undetermined value) or AGCUS (atypical glandular cells of undetermined value). Unusual cells may indicate that you have human papillomavirus (HPV), a virus that can cause cervical cancer. Or it could be signs of cervical cancer.

Your doctor may have another Pap test six months or a year later, or you may need other tests right away to find out why the cells are abnormal.

It is also possible that your doctor did not get a good sample of cervical cells during the Pap test. In this case, your test report will indicate “not satisfactory”. You may need another test to get a clear result.

Your Pap test results will determine when you need your next Pap test.

If your result is normal, you probably will not need a repeat Pap test for at least three years. If your result was abnormal or inconclusive, you may need more frequent Pap tests. Or, you may need additional tests, such as a colposcopy or HPV test, to help your doctor determine why the cells are abnormal. Recommendations for cervical cancer screening for most women: have a Pap smear every three years, an HPV test only every five years, or a combined HPV and Pap test (co-testing) every five years.Women 21 to 29 years old are advised to have a Pap smear every three years.

Pap smear specialist – Montgomery Bethesda MD: Women’s Care in the Capital: Obstetrics

What is a Pap smear?

Pap smear is a screening test that detects cervical cancer and precancerous cells. Your gynecologist painlessly scrapes cells from the cervix using a small brush-like instrument. These cells are then examined under a microscope for abnormalities and cancerous changes.

If your Pap smear shows any disturbing cellular changes, your doctor may request additional tests, including a biopsy. This shows the areas that require treatment and removal of any precancerous cells.

What happens during a Pap test?

When you have a Pap test at Capital Women’s Care – Bethesda, your gynecologist will ask you to lie on your back with your feet on the stirrups for a pelvic examination.Using a dilator to open the vagina allows the doctor to examine and examine your cervix.

Your gynecologist rotates a small brush around the opening of the cervix to collect cells and can collect a second sample from the outside of the cervix. The brushes and cell samples are then placed in the solution and later placed on a glass slide for laboratory evaluation.

Who needs a Pap smear?

The Capital Women’s Care team recommends that women between the ages of 21 and 65 have a Pap test every three years.

90,000 procedure, how it is performed, frequency, indications, risks, how to prepare, what to expect, test results and decoding of a smear for cytology

Pap test, Pap test or Pap test is a diagnostic procedure in which a doctor checks a woman’s cervix for cancerous or precancerous cells.

Pap smear involves collecting cells from the cervix, the lower, narrow end of the uterus that sits on top of the vagina.

Early detection of cervical cancer with a Pap test gives a woman a high chance of successful treatment. In addition, a smear test can detect changes in the cells of the cervix that could lead to the development of cancer in the future. Early detection of abnormal cells with a Pap smear is the first step in the fight against cervical cancer.

Contents of the article:

Why is the Pap test done

Pap test detects cervical cancer at an early stage, therefore dramatically increases a woman’s chances of successful treatment

The Pap test is used to detect cervical cancer or precancerous conditions.This procedure is usually done during a pelvic exam. For women over thirty, a smear may be taken at the same time as testing for human papillomavirus (HPV), a common sexually transmitted infection that can cause cervical cancer in some women.

Who needs a Pap smear

The woman and her healthcare provider can decide when it is time to start performing Pap tests and how often the procedure should be performed.

Usually doctors recommend starting a Pap smear at age 21.

How often should the Pap test be taken

For women between the ages of 21 and 65, doctors recommend repeating the Pap test every three years.

Women aged 30 and over can be tested once every five years, provided that the procedure is associated with an analysis of the human papillomavirus.

If a woman has an increased risk of cancer, her doctor may recommend more frequent Pap tests.In this case, the frequency of testing will depend on age.

Increased risk factors for cervical cancer may include the following.

  • Diagnosis of cervical cancer or detection of precancerous cells by Pap tests;
  • finding a woman under the influence of diethylstilbestrol before her own birth;
  • human papillomavirus infection;
  • Immune system weakened by organ transplantation, chemotherapy, or regular use of corticosteroids.

Read more about the risks of developing cancer here.

Who can stop taking the Pap test

After a hysterectomy unrelated to cancer treatment, a woman may stop taking Pap tests on a regular basis

In some situations, the woman and her doctor may decide to stop performing Pap tests. Such situations may include the following.


After a complete hysterectomy, that is, the surgical removal of the uterus, including the cervix, the woman should ask her doctor if she needs to continue with a regular smear.If the hysterectomy was performed for reasons other than cancer, such as fibroids, the doctor may cancel the mandatory Pap tests. But if the patient has undergone a hysterectomy due to the detection of cancerous or precancerous lesions on the cervix, the doctor may recommend continuing to take regular smears.


Usually doctors consider stopping a woman’s smear after age 65 if her previous tests for cervical cancer were negative, that is, did not indicate cancer.A woman should discuss this issue with a doctor and make a decision with him based on individual risk factors. If the patient continues to have an active sex life, and does this with several partners, the doctor may recommend continuing the delivery of Pap smears.

What are the risks of the Pap test

By and large, medicine does not know the risks associated with the Pap test. However, there are significant risks for those women who do not undergo this procedure. The maximum that a woman can detect is a small discharge immediately after taking a smear. Moderate to severe bleeding after Pap test is not normal.

So the Pap test is a safe way to check for cervical cancer. However, its results can be mixed. When passing a smear, false negative results are possible, that is, situations when the smear does not show the presence of deviations that are actually present.

A false negative result does not mean that the medical staff made a mistake. Factors that can lead to a false negative result include the following:

  • insufficient collection of cells;
  • a small number of abnormal cells in the study area;
  • Concealment of abnormal cells by blood or inflamed cells.

This is important!
Even in situations where abnormal cells cannot be detected the first time, time will be on the woman’s side. Cervical cancer develops for several years, and if one test fails to detect cancer, then the next time it will happen is more likely.

Preparation for test

To ensure that the Pap test is most effective, a woman can follow the recommendations below:

  • Avoid sexual activity, douching, vaginal medications, spermicidal foams, creams, or jellies two days before your procedure.All of the above can clear or hide abnormal cells;
  • Try not to schedule a Pap test during your menstrual cycle. A smear can be taken, but it is better not to perform the procedure at this time, if possible.

What to expect from the


What happens during the Pap test

Using the speculum, the doctor expands the vagina to gain free access to the cervix


Pap test is usually done in the doctor’s office and the only takes a few minutes. A woman can ask her doctor if she needs to undress completely or just below the waist.

The patient lies on her back with bent legs. At the time of the procedure, the body of the body is placed on the table, and the feet remain on special supporting supports.

The doctor carefully inserts an instrument called the speculum into the vagina. This device keeps the walls of the vagina spaced apart to allow the doctor to see the cervix clearly. Injection of the speculum can cause a feeling of pressure in the pelvic area.

The doctor then takes a sample of the cervical cells using a soft brush or flat object called a spatula or spatula. As a rule, this procedure does not cause painful sensations.

What happens after passing the test

After the smear is taken, the woman can continue the day without restrictions.

Depending on the type of test performed, the doctor may place the cells collected during the procedure in a container filled with a special liquid (liquid Pap test) or on a glass slide (cytological smear).

Samples are sent to a laboratory, where they are examined under a microscope to look for characteristics in cells that signal cancer or precancerous conditions.

At the end of the procedure, the woman should ask the doctor when the results are ready.

Test Results

A Pap test can tell the doctor about the presence of suspicious cells that need further examination.

Negative result

If only normal cells are found during the Pap test, the doctor will tell the woman a negative result.

In this case, no further treatment and no further diagnostic procedures will be required until the woman comes for the next gynecological examination.

Positive result

If unusual cells are detected during the Pap test, the doctor will tell the patient a positive result. A positive result does not mean that a woman has cancer. What a positive result indicates depends on the type of cells that were found.

The following are terms that the doctor might say, and what the next steps are for the woman and her healthcare team.

Atypia of flat cells of undetermined significance

Flat cells are thin and literally flat cells that are found on the surface of a healthy cervix. In this case, the Pap test revealed a slight abnormality of these cells, but the changes do not clearly indicate the presence of a precancerous condition.

In a fluid test, a doctor may reanalyze a sample taken to check for viruses in the body that are known to promote cancer.One of these viruses is the human papillomavirus (HPV).

If there are no such viruses, then the abnormal cells found as a result of the test will not be a big problem. If there are viruses, the woman will have to go through further checks.

Squamous intraepithelial lesions

This term is used to identify that cells obtained from a Pap test may be precancerous.

When the rate of cell change is low, the shape, size, and other characteristics of the cells suggest that if precancerous lesions are present, it may take several years before they become cancerous.

If the degree of cell changes is high, there is a high probability that these lesions could develop into cancer much earlier. In this case, additional diagnostics will be required.

Atypia of glandular cells

Glandular cells produce mucus and are located at the entrance of the cervix, as well as in the uterus itself. Atypical glandular cells may have minor abnormalities, but it is almost always difficult to know if they are cancerous.

Further expertise will be required to determine the source of these cells and their significance.

Squamous cell carcinoma or adenocarcinoma

This means that the cells obtained from the Pap test look so abnormal that the pathologist is almost certain of their cancerous origin.

Squamous cell carcinoma is characterized by the occurrence of cancer in the squamous epithelium of the vagina or cervix. Adenocarcinoma is characterized by the presence of cancer in glandular cells. If such cells are found, your doctor will recommend further evaluation.

If the Pap test results are positive, or poor, your doctor may suggest performing a procedure called colposcopy, which uses a special instrument with a magnifying glass (colposcope) to check tissue in your cervix, vagina, and vulva.