With the woman lying on her back, the gynecologist will first examine the outside of the female’s genital and rectal areas, including the urethra (the opening from where urine leaves the body), to make sure that they look normal. A speculum (an instrument which allows the gynecologist to see and examine the vagina and the cervix) is then inserted into the vagina, which passes through the vaginal area (the birth canal). The gynecologist would then use a small brush or swab and insert it into the opening of the cervix to collect a sample of cells. The sample is then sent to the laboratory for further evaluation.
Pap Smear Test Procedure
What do the results of a Pap smear test mean?
A Pap smear test results will say one of the following things -
- The result is normal- “Normal” pap smear result means that the cells collected from the female’s cervix look normal like they should and the female does not have to do anything until her next Pap test. No cancerous cells or HPV strains are found if the pap smear test result is normal.
- The result is unclear- “Unclear” pap smear test result indicated that the gynecologist does not know whether the sample cells collected from the female’s cervix are normal or abnormal. If the results of a pap test are unclear, the gynecologist may do more tests right away to rule out any complications or problems. If things seem okay, the gynecologist may have the female come back in 6 months or so for another pap test.
- The result is abnormal- “Abnormal” pap smear test result means that the cells collected from the female’s cervix during the Pap test look abnormal. Abnormal Pap test results do not necessarily mean that the female has cancer. If the results of a pap test are abnormal, the gynecologist will do more tests right away to figure out what should happen next. In such when the results seem less serious, the gynecologist may do another pap test right away or wait 6 months or 1 year before doing another pap smear test. If the pap test finds more serious changes in the cells of the cervix, the gynecologist will do more tests, like a colposcopy and biopsy.