How It Is Done continued...
If you are due for a Pap test, the doctor or nurse
will use a small brush or a wooden spatula to gently collect a sample of
cells from your cervix. You may have some staining or bleeding after the sample is
taken. A sample of the cervical mucus may also be collected with a cotton swab. The mucus may be tested for sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea or chlamydia.
Your doctor or nurse will insert one or two gloved fingers
of one hand into your vagina while placing the other hand on your lower
belly. By pressing down on your belly and moving the fingers around inside
your vagina, the doctor or nurse can find and feel the size, shape,
and texture of the uterus and ovaries. Any unusual growths, tenderness, or
pain can also be identified.
Your doctor or nurse will insert one finger into your
rectum and one into your vagina. This helps the doctor or nurse evaluate your ovaries and uterus ligaments. This exam is
not always done as part of a pelvic exam.
the exam is finished, you will be given a washcloth or tissue to wipe your
vaginal area to remove any discharge from the exam. Then you will get dressed. Some test results may be available right away. But getting results from the Pap
test may take several days to a couple of weeks.
How It Feels
A pelvic exam is more comfortable if you are relaxed. Breathing deeply
and having a light conversation with the doctor or nurse may help you
relax. Try not to hold your breath or tense your muscles.
feel some pressure or mild discomfort when the
speculum is inserted into your vagina. Try to relax
your legs and hips as much as you can. You may feel pain or irritation,
especially if you have a vaginal infection. If a metal speculum is used, the
metal may feel cold and hard. The speculum may be warmed with water or
lubricated with a vaginal lubricant, such as K-Y Jelly, before being inserted.