Skip Navigation
Genetics Home Reference: your guide to understanding genetic conditions About   Site Map   Contact Us
 
Home A service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine®
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q-R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y-Z

Pap smear

Synonym(s)

  • cervical smears
  • Papanicolaou smear
  • Papanicolaou test
  • Pap test

Definition(s)

A procedure in which cells are scraped from the cervix for examination under a microscope. It is used to detect cancer and changes that may lead to cancer. A Pap smear can also show noncancerous conditions, such as infection or inflammation.

Definition from:  National Cancer Institute dictionaryThis link leads to a site outside Genetics Home Reference.

A method or a test based on it for the early detection of cancer especially of the uterine cervix that involves staining exfoliated cells by a special technique which differentiates diseased tissue -- called also Papanicolaou smear, Papanicolaou test, Pap test.

Definition from: Merriam-Webster's Medical DictionaryThis link leads to a site outside Genetics Home Reference. by Merriam-Webster Inc.

See also Understanding Medical Terminology.

 
Published: July 21, 2014