Cervical cancer is considered to be one of the most deadly forms of cancer that affects millions of
women all over the world. And the only way that doctors and physicians alike can detect cervical
cancer on time is to do a pap smear test. This method has become quite popular as it enables
doctors to diagnose the problem early on and arrest the same. This is why you need to check in with
your doctor regularly and get a pap smear done every now and then.
Some of the symptoms associated with cervical cancer happen to be –
Abnormal bleeding, post coitus
Abnormal bleeding, between menstrual periods and after menopause
Pelvic pain and discomfort
Smelly discharge from vagina
If you are currently experiencing any or all of the symptoms, then you need to check in with your
doctor at the earliest and get a pap smear done at the earliest.
Your physician would first conduct a physical examination of your pelvic area after which he would recommend that you take a pap smear test. You would be required to abstain from sex for 24 hrs prior to taking the test, and avoid dousing your vaginal area or using any spermicidal for the same period. This is done to ensure that your pap smear test is effective so that your physician can identify the reason for the infection and even diagnose an onset of cervical cancer early on. And try not to get the pap smear done during your menstrual periods as this can impede the test.
The pap smear (slide) test is primarily used to test for cervical cancer as well as to determine if you have a bacterial or fungal infection.
Your doctor would ask you to disrobe and wear a hospital gown; he would then request you to lie down on the bed, while putting your leg into stirrups. This is done to provide your physician with ease of access to the area; he would then gently palpitate your cervix, insert a speculum to separate the folds of your vagina so that he can examine your cervix. It is at this point that he would insert a spatula on which he would gently collect cells from your cervix, which would then be processed to determine the source of your infection as well as to get a better idea of your cervical health. Your doctor would then transfer the contents from the spatula onto a glass slide, which is then examined under a microscope to determine if there are any cancerous cells or pre-cancerous cells in the same. On positive identification, your doctor would recommend a course of treatment to effectively treat your condition. You should be able to get back to your normal routine in no time at all.