Pap Testing

Overview

Definition

The cervix is the opening to the uterus. The cells on the cervix can become cancerous. Changes detected early can be treated before cancer develops. A Pap test is a way to look for changing or cancerous cells on the cervix.

The Cervix
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Possible Complications

There are no major complications associated with this test.

SymptomsandDiagnosis

Treatments

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Edits to original content made by Denver Health.

a (Pap Smear; Pap Screening; Papanicolaou Test; Cervical Cancer Screening)

RESOURCES

American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists http://www.acog.org 

Office on Women's Health http://www.womenshealth.gov 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada http://www.sogc.org 

Women's Health Matters http://www.womenshealthmatters.ca 

References

2015 Sexually transmitted diseases treatment guidelines. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/std/tg2015/default.htm. Updated October 21, 2015. Accessed December 11, 2015.

American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Practice Bulletin No. 140: management of abnormal cervical cancer screening test results and cervical cancer precursors. Obstet Gynecol. 2013;122(6):1338-1367.

Sampling of cervix for Papanicolaou smear. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at:  http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T907152/Sampling-of-cervix-for-Papanicolaou-smear . Updated August 23, 2016. Accessed October 10, 2016.

Smith MA, Ebell MH. Cervical cancer screening and Pap smears. Essential Evidence Plus website. Available at: http://www.essentialevidenceplus.com. Accessed December 11, 2015.