Thursday, September 17, 2015

Is A Pap Smear Necessary After Hysterectomy?

We are creatures of habit. Sometimes we need to stop and think what the medical professional is telling us. We have to ask why more often. If something is nagging us we have to discuss it with the right professional. If it still does not sit right, ask another. Keep asking until you are satisfied.

After I had a hysterectomy in the early 1990s I was excited. I would not have to do another Pap Smear. I remember that clearly!

As years went by, and I don't know exactly why but a OB/GYN doctor told me I needed a Pap Smear and it began again. I often wondered, if I don't have a uterus why are they doing a Pap Smear?

I went see my family doctor today for a slew of issues and mentioned I wanted a PAP smear. I figured while he was doing that he could check out what could be causing my current problem that I will not get into. I promise, you really don't want to know. HA!

The awesome smart logical doctor I love reminded me why a PAP smear is done. He said since I don't have a uterus I don't need a Pap Smear. 

"What was the OB/GYN doctor scraping then?" I asked.  He commented the older doctors swear by it but studies show it is not necessary.

I wonder. Again, what was he scraping? Why did my insurance pay for this 'unnecessary' procedure all these years? 

I scolded myself because I KNEW this. It was in the back of my mind but I trusted my OB/GYN. So that is one less doctor I have to see. YAY!

I've looked up the subject online and of course there are mixed opinions. But I've read several times that 4%-15% who have Pap smears after hysterectomies are unnecessary.  You can read an article here.

Until next time..




8 comments:

  1. The article does a pretty good job of explaining the overall differences in this situation. It did mention that if the cervix was left behind in a hysterectomy (which happens sometimes), the doctor scrapes the walls of the vagina. Ultimately, each one of us has to make our own decisions for our bodies.

    Otherwise, I hope all of your other problems get cleared up soon.

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    1. Yes and my doctor mentioned but when he examined me he did say I had no cervix left. You are right..we have to make our own decisions.

      Thanks, as everything else it is a process of clearing my problems.

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  2. While I am without my uterus I still have my ovaries and my cervix, thus the need for a Pap Smear. However, I went to a doctor here in FL who told me that it was impossible for me to have my cervix. I told him that he needed to do some studying!!

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    1. The cervix is bottom of the uterus so if you don't have a uterus, why need a Pap Smear?? I did a little research and I've read that a PAP smear very rarely detects ovarian cancer. I also read that if you have had a total hysterectomy a pap smear is not needed. Since you still have your cervix, you still need the pap smear. It all depends if you have had a vaginal hysterectomy or a laparoscopic hysterectomy to determine if you may still have a cervix.

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  3. Hello Lady, its been a while...sorry, two new grands have kept me busy and off my blog. anyway, I'm here tonight and I have to totally agree with you about this. I had a full hysterectomy in the 80's and why am I paying for a pap every year? I now have to wonder what they are scraping too? maybe that's how they get their jollys. Maybe that's how they get paid...every pap gets a bonus check for them. Maybe they just like doing the...gag!..Maybe they didn't really go to medical school.

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    1. It's okay. I've been scarce in posting anyway. Congrats on the two grands! Maybe you need to bring that up with your doc next time. My insurance pays 100% on preventive and Pap smear is included so I guess docs don't want to lose out. You're right..gag...

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  4. I still have all my parts, but I've heard that a pap smear doesn't detect ovarian cancer. I think they need a test for that. I also heard, unless you sleep around, there's no need for a pap smear every year either (even with all your female parts.) It's too bad there isn't an unbiased, consistent answer about all this stuff.

    I do think these doctors just want the insurance money they get for doing them.

    Sunni
    http://sunni-survivinglife.blogspot.com/

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    1. Sunni, I've heard every two years. I am with you on someone needing to get a consistent answer. I absolutely believe that this particular doctor was just wanting the insurance money. A pap smear is to test for cervical cancer. The cervix is part of the uterus so if you don't have a uterus there is no point of a pap smear. You're lucky to be healthy enough to have all of your parts lol.

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