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Five Tips For Getting the Most Reliable Pap Results:

  • Schedule your Pap test at least 5 days after the last day of your period. The ideal time is in the second half of your cycle.
  • Don't have sex or use tampons, vaginal creams, or foams 48 hrs before your test.  If you do have intercourse, use a condom.
  • Don't douche!  Not only is there probably no need to, douching can wash away some evidence of abnormalities.
  • Ask your doctor (or office staff) if the lab your Pap smear is going to is fully accredited and meets recent new standards.
  • Ask your doctor about the new HPV test which is given at the same time as the Pap smear to see whether you have an infection with a high risk strain of HPV, the causative agent of cervical cancer.

For more information about Pap smears, HPV, and cervical cancer, click here.

Created: 10/17/2000  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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