Pap Smear Tests
A pap smear (or cervical smear test) is a way to check on the health of your cervix. Marie Stopes South Africa offers accessible pap smear tests to all women across the country. From first-time pap smear tests to return visits, our pap smear test services are available at all our centers nationwide.
Why Get a Pap Smear
Not only can a pap smear test detect sexually transmitted infections (STIs), it’s also a quick and simple means of screening for early warning signs that cervical cancer might develop in the future.
If abnormal cells are noticed during your pap test they can be closely observed and/or treated to prevent cancer from developing. A pap test also allows you to touch base with your healthcare provider around any infections or discomfort you may be experiencing.
Marie Stopes has 14 centres across South Africa, to make an appointment for a pap smear book online or call us on 0800 11 77 85. If it’s your first time having a pap smear or you have some questions on why getting a pap smear test is important, check out our Frequently Asked Questions in this section.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any more questions or queries on the pap smear process.
Centres that offer Pap Smear Services
Book an appointment at one of our centres
Pap Smear FAQs
The test looks for changes in the cells of your cervix. Changes happen very slowly but can lead to serious problems like cervical cancer. Cervical cancer is the number one killer of South African women. Often, there are no symptoms, until the condition is at an advanced stage. If abnormal cells are noticed at screening, they can be closely observed and/or treated to prevent cancer from developing. Regular screening has been proven to reduce the risk of cancer by 90%. Many women feel nervous about having a smear test, yet regular screening has saved thousands of lives by discovering problems before they become serious.
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
The sample taken during your pap smear can also be used to test for HPV. HPV is a common viral infection, which can be passed on during sex. It can show up in the cells of your cervix and sometimes causes an abnormal or unclear smear test result. There are many different types of HPV, some of which have been linked to cervical cancer. The test can spot HPV even before changes can be seen on the cervix. This means women at risk of cervical cancer can be identified much earlier and their health can be monitored closely.