Posts for tag: abnormal pap smear
Women’s health is a complicated and important facet of medicine. Receiving an abnormal pap smear result can seem scary. However, it is important to know and understand what these results mean. Find out about pap smears, abnormal results, and keeping up with your gynecological health with Dr. Eric Ashkin, Dr. Aliya Poshni, and Dr. Leslie Masiky at Capital Women’s Care in Rockville, MD.
Why is a well woman examination important?
The most important aspect of a well woman examination is the prevention of future issues. A pap smear, performed during a well woman examination, takes a sample of cells from the cervix and is the leading cervical cancer prevention available. Your doctor tests the cells for abnormalities. An abnormal pap smear means that the results of the testing have found cells which are not normal, healthy cells. An abnormal pap smear does not mean that you have cervical cancer.
What does an abnormal pap smear mean?
Often, abnormal cells are a result of the human papilloma virus, or HPV. These cells are linked to cervical cancer, allowing doctors to catch and treat this condition early at its most curable stages. Abnormal pap smear results can also occur due to infections caused by yeast or bacteria, treatable conditions which are usually nothing to worry about. Abnormal pap smear results in women going through menopause could be simply because their cells have changed due to age.
Pap Smear in Rockville, MD
According to the United States Office on Women’s Health, women from the ages of 21-29 should have a pap smear every three years. Women between 30-64 should have a pap smear and HPV test every five years. Additionally, women with immune system problems coinciding with chemotherapy, steroid use, or other issues, those who have had cervical cancer, or women who are HIV-positive should have more frequent pap smears. Consult with your doctor to determine how often you should have a pap smear.
For more information on abnormal pap smears or to schedule your well woman examination, please contact Dr. Ashkin, Dr. Poshni, and Dr. Masiky at Capital Women’s Care in Rockville, MD. Call (301) 569-6301 to schedule your appointment with your gynecologist today!
Gynecological health is a top concern for women ages 21-65. One of the most common appointments recommended is a pap smear. This is a test that allows your gynecologist to check the health of your vagina and cervix. When the results show an abnormal pap smear, it’s important to take further steps with your Montgomery County gynecologist. Learn what to do if your pap smear comes back as abnormal.
What Is an Abnormal Pap Smear?
When a pap smear reading is abnormal, it’s an indication that some of the cells on your cervix are not normal. This can be caused by a number of issues, but in many cases it’s due to HPV (Human Papillomavirus), a sexually transmitted infection. Some forms of HPV can become precancerous if they aren’t monitored and treated properly, which is why regular checkups are highly recommended for women over 21.
Schedule a Biopsy and Colposcopy
The next appointment your Montgomery County gynecologist may want to schedule after an abnormal pap smear is a biopsy or colposcopy test. Both tests will give your doctor a closer look at the cells to determine if they could become precancerous.
Eliminating the Abnormal Cells
When the cells are evaluated and determined to be non-cancerous, a procedure called cryotherapy may be performed to remove the abnormal cells. It is a relatively quick treatment that freezes the cells with liquid CO2 to eliminate them. It is most commonly done if the abnormal cells are at the opening of the cervix. Your doctor will likely schedule a follow-up pap smear about six months later.
Discuss the HPV Vaccine
If you are sexually active, you might want to discuss the HPV vaccine with your gynecologist to reduce the chance of having an abnormal pap smear due to HPV in the future. This vaccine may help prevent future complications related to this very common STI that affects as many as 50 percent of sexually active people.
See a Gynecologist Today
If you’ve been diagnosed with an abnormal pap smear recently or in the past, it’s important that you keep up with regular appointments with your Montgomery County gynecologist. Call the office of Capital Women's Health today at (301) 569-6301 to schedule your next appointment.