Pap Smear Test Brisbane Northside
It is still extremely important for women in Brisbane over the age of 20 to get their pap smear test from their local GP every 5 years. Together with seeing their GP every 2 years for the new cervical cancer screening for HPV every 2 years.
What is Pap Smear Test?
Papanicolaou tests, also called as the Pap smear, is a procedure done to women for cervical cancer detection. A Pap smear test is done by scraping the cervix to check for any abnormal cell growth. Additionally, a Pap smear test can detect the presence of human papillomavirus (HPV), which causes cervical cancer. With cervical cancer being the fourth most common cause of cancer deaths, it is best that Pap smear tests are done on a regular basis for early detection. Usually, women who have cervical cancer may not know they have the illness because the symptoms are silent. The incidents of cervical cancer have been reduced in the past years because of early detection through Pap smear.
Who Needs to Undergo Pap Smear Test?
Women should start getting Pap smear as early as age 21. Some women are at an increased risk of having cervical cancer or infection due to the following reasons:
- Multiple sexual partners
- Sexual intercourse at an early age
- Weakened immune system due to chemotherapy or organ transplant
- Being HIV-positive
- Previous cancer on the genital tract
- Having HPV infection
Women who are over 30 and have had three consecutive normal Pap smear results can request to have their tests done, together with an HPV screening, once in every five years. The HPV is a virus that causes warts and it is the HPV types 16 and 18 that causes cervical cancer. Women who are in a monogamous relationship are also encouraged to have their Pap smear test-taking as the HPV virus can be dormant for years and can suddenly become active.
Meanwhile, women who are over the age of 65 with a history of normal Pap smear may opt to stop having the tests in the future.
What Happens During a Pap Smear Test?
The patient will lie down on an examination table with legs spread and feed rested in supports. The doctor will be inserting a speculum into the vagina, which will keep the vaginal walls open to provide access to the cervix. The doctor will scrape a small number of sample cells from the cervix through a spatula, a brush, or a cytobrush (a combination of a spatula and a brush). The sample cells will be sent to the lab to determine abnormalities in the cells. This procedure is fast but may be quite uncomfortable and might cause irritation.
In case there is vaginal bleeding after the test has been conducted, consult with the doctor who did the procedure immediately.
What Are the Possible Results of a Pap Smear?
- It means that there are no abnormal cells identified and the Pap smear test can be repeated three years later.
- Having an abnormal result does not mean cancer right away. It means that there are abnormal cells on the cervix, which are possibly pre-cancerous. The doctor can recommend the increased frequency of Pap smears, colposcopy, or biopsy for closer monitoring.
At ubuntu medical, we also do sexual health