Pap Smear

Amy Bruner, MD -  - Gynecologist

Amy Bruner, MD

Gynecologist located in Beaverton, OR

If you have been diagnosed with an HPV virus, you may be worried about your risk for cervical cancer. Amy Bruner, MD, a gynecologist in Portland, Oregon, can perform a Pap smear and check for any abnormalities, infections or diseases. Call or book online to have this test, an important step in any woman’s health care.

Pap Smear Q & A

What is a Pap smear?

Cases of cervical cancer have decreased by 50% in the past 30 years due to widespread screening. The procedure that tests for cervical cancer is called a Pap smear. During the procedure, Dr. Bruner inserts an instrument called a speculum into the front of your vagina. The speculum doesn’t hurt, but it creates enough room for Dr. Bruner to gently rotate a small brush against your cervix to collect cells to be analyzed.

How do I prepare for a Pap smear?

You don’t want to interfere with your body’s natural production of cells. Prior to your appointment with Dr. Bruner, you should avoid the following:

  • Having sexual intercourse
  • Douching
  • Using spermicide or contraceptive jelly
  • Applying medicine in the vagina

 

You shouldn’t schedule a Pap smear when you are menstruating, as that sometimes leads to inaccurate results.

How often should I get a Pap smear?

It is generally recommended that women between ages 21-65 have a Pap smear every three years. Dr. Bruner may suggest more frequent screenings if you have certain risk factors, including a previous cervical cancer diagnosis, HIV infection or a weakened immune system.

What happens if I get an abnormal Pap test result?

If your Pap smear comes back “positive,” this means that some unusual cells showed up in your test. It doesn’t mean that you have cervical cancer. Dr. Bruner can explain exactly what you need to do in response to the test.

These are some of the types of abnormal cells that may be present in your Pap smear:

  • Atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance that are abnormal but don’t suggest cancer
  • Squamous intraepithelial lesions, which are considered precancerous
  • Atypical glandular cells that need further testing
  • Squamous cell cancer or adenocarcinoma cells, which usually mean cancer is present

 

It is important not to panic over your test results. Dr. Bruner can explain what they mean and provide the latest advanced medicine and up-to-date practices to manage any abnormal test results.

Amy Bruner, MD, is a board-certified gynecologist offering Pap smear tests to women in  Portland, Oregon. Call or book through her online portal to practice the best in preventive women’s health care.