Pap Smear Singapore

Pap Smear Test Singapore 2024:
What You Need To Know

(Cervical Cancer Screening: Caring & Treating Since 2005)

What is Pap Smear? A Pap Smear is a simple screening test for cervical cancer.

Cervical cancer is the 5th most common cancer that affects women in Singapore, with 300 women a year being diagnosed with cervical cancer.  Infection by certain high-risk strains of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), which are acquired through sexual contact, is a significant risk factor which leads to the eventual development of cervical cancer and is present for years before cell changes occur.  Infection of the cervix by HPV causes changes in the cells of the cervix, leading to abnormal growth and eventually, cancer.

PAP Smear Test & Cervical Cancer Screening

Active Female above the Age of 21

A regular PAP smear helps to detect early, pre-cancerous changes and is a good screening tool to prevent full-blown cervical cancer.

A PAP smear involves using a brush to take a small sample of cells from the cervix during a vaginal examination for evaluation. It can be easily and quickly performed in the clinic with minimal discomfort. The sample obtained is then examined under a microscope to detect abnormalities in the cells that may suggest cancer or a pre-cancerous condition.

The PAP smear is an effective test which facilitates early detection and treatment of cervical cancer and is part of the recommended routine cancer screening by the Ministry of Health. Every sexually active female above the age of 21 should undergo regular PAP smears as part of their routine health screening.

What You Need To Know About HPV, Pap Smear, HPV Vaccination and Cervical Cancer

Understanding HPV (Human Papillomavirus), Pap smear screenings, HPV vaccination, and cervical cancer is crucial for maintaining women’s reproductive health. Let’s delve into each aspect to provide a comprehensive overview.

HPV (Human Papillomavirus):

Overview: HPV is a group of viruses transmitted through intimate skin-to-skin contact. It is the most common sexually transmitted infection worldwide. There are over 100 types of HPV, and some can lead to genital warts or various cancers, including cervical cancer.

Transmission: HPV spreads through vaginal, anal, or oral sex. It can be contracted even if there are no visible symptoms.

Risk Factors: Multiple sexual partners, a weakened immune system, and early sexual activity increase the risk of HPV infection.

Pap Smear:

Purpose: A Pap smear (Pap test) is a screening procedure to detect abnormal cervical cells. Early detection can prevent the progression to cervical cancer.

Procedure: During a Pap smear, a healthcare provider collects cells from the cervix, which are then examined under a microscope for any abnormalities.

Frequency: Guidelines recommend Pap smears every three years for women aged 21-65. After age 30, combined Pap smear and HPV testing may be done every five years.

HPV Vaccination:

Vaccine Types: HPV vaccines, such as Gardasil and Cervarix, protect against the most common cancer-causing HPV types. Gardasil 9, the latest vaccine, guards against nine HPV types.

Target Population: Vaccination is recommended for both males and females. Ideally, it is administered before the onset of sexual activity to ensure maximum effectiveness.

Prevention: HPV vaccination significantly reduces the risk of cervical cancer and other HPV-related cancers. It’s a vital preventive measure for public health.

Cervical Cancer:

Development: Persistent infection with high-risk HPV types can lead to cervical cancer. It typically progresses slowly, providing an opportunity for early detection and intervention.

Symptoms: In the early stages, cervical cancer may not present noticeable symptoms. As it advances, symptoms may include abnormal vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain, and pain during intercourse.

Treatment: Treatment options for cervical cancer may include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Early detection through Pap smears increases the likelihood of successful treatment.

Preventive Strategies:

Regular Screenings: Routine Pap smears and, when applicable, HPV testing are critical for early detection.

Vaccination: HPV vaccination is a powerful preventive measure, especially when administered before exposure to the virus.

Safe Sexual Practices: Practicing safe sex, including the use of condoms, can reduce the risk of HPV transmission.

In summary, a comprehensive approach to women’s health involves awareness of HPV, regular screenings like Pap smears, HPV vaccination, and adopting safe sexual practices. These elements work together to reduce the incidence of cervical cancer and promote overall reproductive well-being. Regular consultations with healthcare providers ensure personalized guidance based on individual health histories and risk factors.

Services Available:

Our clinic offers:

PAP Smear

A brush is used to obtain a sample of cervical cells to look for cellular abnormalities that may indicate a pre-cancerous or cancerous condition.

PAP smear with high-risk HPV DNA testing

In addition to a PAP smear, a sample is also taken to test for the presence of high-risk HPV infection within the cervical cells which may precede any actual cell changes seen.

HPV vaccination

A new 9 valent hpv vaccine singapore offers protection against 9 strains of HPV including high-risk cervical, vulvar, vaginal and anal cancer-causing strains.

Rapid HPV Testing (Next Day Results)

This test allows early detection of high-risk HPV group.

Rapid HPV Testing (Next Day Results) + PAP Smear

Rapid HPV Test + Thin Prep test allows you to identify not just cervical cancer or pre-cancerous state, but also High-risk HPV infection which can precede cell changes

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Pap Smear

Sexually active women above the age of 21 should undergo regular PAP smears every 3 years until the age of 65.

A PAP smear should be repeated at least once every 3 years. Depending on the result, follow-up PAP smears may be required at closer intervals.

Yes. Some of the symptoms of cervical abnormalities or cancer include spotting after intercourse or in between menstrual periods and abnormal vaginal discharge, but these occur only with more advanced stages and most women with pre-cancerous lesions will not have any symptoms and feel entirely well.

Yes, as the risk of cancer increases with age, screening even after menopause is recommended. Women above the age of 50 are twice as likely than younger women to die of cervical cancer.

Yes, as the vaccine covers most but not all of the high-risk cervical cancer-causing HPV strains. HPV Vaccination

The optimal time to do a PAP smear is at least a week or more after your period has ended so as to ensure a good quality sample can be obtained.

Your doctor will use a vaginal speculum to open up your vaginal canal. A small brush will then be used to obtain a sample of cells from your cervix.

The process will take no more than a few minutes.

You may experience some slight discomfort during the PAP smear and some light spotting after.

A PAP smear detects any pre-cancerous/dysplastic or cancerous abnormalities in the cervical cells obtained in the sample.

High-risk HPV infection may precede the development of an abnormal PAP smear and this can be picked up with high risk HPV testing.

If you have a normal PAP smear but test positive for high-risk HPV infection, your doctor may advise you on a closer follow-up PAP smear or additional testing.

The PAP smear is an excellent screening tool but it is not perfect.

Occasional false negatives (i.e. a normal PAP smear) may occur even in the presence of abnormalities of the cervix.

Thankfully, most pre-cancerous lesions grow slowly and as long as you undergo your regular PAP smears, most abnormalities will be detected early.

An abnormal PAP smear does not equate cancer.

It indicates that there are abnormal cells in an area of the cervix and that more detailed evaluation of the cervix is required before a diagnosis can be made.

This may require a repeat PAP smear at a closer interval.

In some cases, depending on the abnormality detected, your doctor may refer you to a gynaecologist for a colposcopy examination.

During a colposcopy examination, a colposcope, which is an instrument with a magnifying glass, is used to examine the surface of the cervix in greater detail.

A biopsy, where additional tissue samples are obtained, may sometimes be performed as well.

Speak to Our Female Doctors Today!

Women’s Clinic Branches

If you are due for your routine PAP smear or if you have questions about cervical cancer screening and wish to find out more, please call or visit any of our clinics or drop us an email at

We have female doctors at our Robertson Walk and Kovan Branches.
All our other branches provide Pap Smear, 9 Valent HPV Vaccination.

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