Annual Exams &
Pap Smears

Annual Exams & Pap Smears

An annual visit is suggested for all patients to discuss health history and gynecology care needs. Regular visits with DARDUR Medical encourage and promote healthy living and the prevention of common illnesses. Yearly visits to review personal and family risk factors provide the opportunity to discuss future family planning, STI prevention, and general health check-ins. The visit will likely include a weight and blood pressure check. Based on your health needs the visit may or may not include a physical exam, clinical breast exam, pelvic exam, Pap smear, or various tests for sexually transmitted infections.

The Pap smear screens for cervical cancer. A Pap smear may be offered as part of an annual exam. If you have a cervix and have ever been sexually active in any way, you need regular pap smears.

Cervical cancer screening should begin at the age of 21 years.  This is based on the very low incidence of cancer and the potential for adverse effects associated with follow-up visits.

If your Pap smear is normal, you may not need to have another Pap smear for 3 to 5 years, depending on your age and the results of other recommended tests. Historically the pap smear has been an analysis of cells only, but new technology detects the genetic material of the human papillomavirus (HPV). Depending on your age, an added test to detect HPV may be done. If you are 30 or older, you may have a Pap test and an HPV test. If both these tests are negative, then you may go 5 years in between pap smears.

Annual Exams & Pap Smears FAQ

Do pap smears hurt?
Are sexually transmitted infection tests or a pregnancy test included in a Pap smear exam?
How long does it take to get a Pap smear?
How do I prepare myself for a Pap smear and/or annual exam?