How are cervical cancer tests done?

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What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Initially, cervical cancer may not cause any signs and symptoms. However, in advanced cases, it may cause abnormal bleeding or discharge from the vagina. There can be other symptoms as well like pelvic pain, pain during intercourse, etc. In this article, we will discuss the ways to diagnose cervical cancer, the tests to confirm it and whether an ultrasound can detect cervical cancer.

How do you diagnose cervical cancer?

The Pap test and HPV test are two tests which are screening tests, not diagnostic tests for cervical cancer. They cannot tell certainly if you have cervical cancer. However, if a woman gets an abnormal Pap test or HPV test result, then they will need further testing to confirm the presence of cancer or pre-cancerous cells. 

The screening requirement differs depending on the age. If a woman is between 30 to 65 years of age, she can get HPV test every five years and a Pap test every three years. After 65 years, a doctor must check whether a woman must undergo the screening. 

If the doctor suspects cervical cancer, they may recommend further tests to confirm the diagnosis. 

Which specific tests are done to confirm cancer?

A colonoscopy is a procedure that uses a special magnifying instrument called a colonoscope to find abnormal cells that can become cancerous.

During a colonoscopy, the doctor may also take a sample of cervical cells through biopsy to study the cells. Following are the procedures to take a sample:

  1. Punch biopsy: It is a procedure in which a small round piece of tissue is removed using a sharp, hollow, circular instrument.
  2. Endocervical curettage: It is a procedure in which a sample of tissue is scraped from the lining of the cervical canal using a spoon-shaped instrument called a curette.
  3. Cone biopsy or conization: In this technique, the doctor removes a cone-shaped piece of the tissue from the cervix. The methods commonly used for cone biopsies includes the loop electrosurgical excision procedure (LEEP). This procedure is also called the large loop excision of the transformation zone (LLETZ). Another method is the cold knife cone biopsy.

Can cervical cancer be seen on ultrasound?

An ultrasound isn’t usually used to detect cervical cancer due to the availability of better screening options. An ultrasound is an imaging test that uses high-frequency sound waves to view your reproductive organs. However, few researchers suggest that ultrasound may be useful to assess the local extent of cervical cancer. Also, an ultrasound only assesses lymph nodes. 

In a nutshell, an ultrasound won’t be able to detect minute abnormalities in the cervical cells. However, if the cancer has grown, it will be able to show on an ultrasound.

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Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

What is the process of cervical cancer tests?
Various tests including colonoscopy, punch biopsy, endocervical curettage, cone biopsy or conization are done to reach a diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, every woman once they reach the age of 21 years should get regular pap tests and HPV tests. If the doctors find anything unusual, they may recommend for further tests to confirm the diagnosis of cervical cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Dr. Shikha Shiromani
Dr. Shikha Shiromani
A dental surgeon by education and medical writer by profession, Shikha is responsible for research and fact-check.
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