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SHARING IS CARING

Vaginal Vault Smears after Hysterectomy

From the Hysterectomy Recovery Articles List

Vaginal vault smearWhat is a vaginal vault smear and do I need one?


A vaginal vault smear is similar to a Pap smear. The biggest difference is that while a Pap smear tests cells on the cervix, a vaginal vault smear tests cells from other areas of the vagina.

During a Pap smear, your doctor will take samples of cells from your cervix to test for cervical cancer. Women who are sexually active or at least 21 years old should have a Pap smear annually. For those in a monogamous relationship and with three normal test results in a row, your doctor may suggest having a Pap smear once every three to five years.

If you have had a partial hysterectomy where you retained your cervix, you will need to continue having annual Pap smears. After a complete hysterectomy, however, most women will not need to continue having any type of smear.

In some cases, some type of smear is still necessary after a complete hysterectomy. A history of cancer or pre-cancer are two reasons to continue having annual smears.

You and your doctor can determine the best plan for you based on your lifestyle, personal, and family medical history. If you change sexual partners, you should also get a vaginal vault smear.


This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support.

07-27-2016 - 04:41 PM


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