Pap Smear Cervical Cancer Screening with the Mobile Prevention Center

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Wellness Exams

A wellness exam is a comprehensive checkup conducted by a nurse practitioner. Your provider will check your vital signs, review your health history, conduct a physical assessment, examine your breasts and may perform a Pap smear to test for cervical cancer. A test for the human papillomavirus (HPV) may also be done.

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Request an appointment on the Norton Healthcare Mobile Prevention Center.

What Is a Pap Smear?

The Pap smear test is to detect precancerous cells in the cervix. A Pap smear involves taking a sample of cells from the cervix. The cells are evaluated in a lab, where abnormal cervix cells can be detected before cervical cancer develops. If you have an abnormal Pap smear result, you may need additional testing to confirm or rule out the presence of abnormal cells or cervical cancer.

Cervical Cancer Screening Guidelines

Under age 21 – No screening recommended

Ages 21 to 29 – Pap smear every three years

Ages 30 to 64 – Pap smear with HPV screening every five years, or Pap smear alone every three years

Over age 65 – No screening recommended

After hysterectomy – No screening recommended

These recommendations are for women with low risk of cervical cancer and with a history of negative screenings. If you have questions regarding screening recommendations, talk with your health care provider.

Risk Factors for Cervical Cancer

  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Smoking
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • Using birth control longer than five years
  • Giving birth to three or more children
  • Having several sexual partners

Signs and Symptoms of Cervical Cancer

Symptoms of cervical cancer often do not appear until the disease has progressed, which is why early screening and detection is so important. These symptoms may include abnormal vaginal bleeding, such as bleeding after sex or bleeding after menopause; abnormal vaginal discharge; or pain during intercourse. If you have any of these symptoms, talk to your health care provider.

What is HPV?

HPV is a group of more than 150 viruses. It is spread by sexual contact, including vaginal, anal and oral sex. It is the most common sexually transmitted infection and often has no signs or symptoms. Around 79 million people in the U.S. are infected with HPV.

Certain types of HPV — called low-risk — can cause genital warts in both men and women. High-risk types of HPV can lead to cancers of the cervix, penis, anus, mouth and throat. In some people, HPV doesn’t cause any issues, and the body rids itself of the virus. In others, the infection becomes chronic. There is no cure for HPV infection.

How Do I Protect Myself From HPV?

  • Get vaccinated. The two-dose HPV vaccine is available for girls and boys starting around age 11. Talk to your child’s pediatrician to get more information.
  • Get screened for cervical cancer.
  • If you are sexually active, use condoms to prevent the spread of HPV.

Why Have a Primary Care Provider

It is important to have a relationship with a primary care provider to oversee your health and keep you on track with staying healthy. If you do not have a primary care provider, ask the staff on the mobile prevention center or call (502) 629-1234.

After Your Mobile Prevention Center Visit

You will receive a letter and/or MyNortonChart notification about your Pap and/or HPV test results. If your test results are normal, a time for your next screening will be suggested. Wellness exams usually are scheduled annually, with appropriate Pap and/or HPV testing as indicated.

What Is an Abnormal Result?

If you receive a call or a letter stating your Pap or HPV test is abnormal, don’t panic! This does not mean that you have cancer. It does mean that you will need further follow-up. We will talk with you about the result and schedule an appointment for further evaluation.

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