II. Definition

  1. Pathologist unable to use Pap Smear due to poor quality

III. Causes

  1. Inadequate sampling (Cervix transformation zone not included)
  2. Air drying (conventional sampling methods before thin-prep Pap Smear)
  3. Excessive Red Blood Cells or White Blood Cells

IV. Management: Generally unsatisfactory sample

  1. Consider Colposcopy if HPV positive at age 30 years or older
  2. Repeat cytology in 2-4 months
    1. Negative repeat testing
      1. Repeat testing with HPV and cytology in one year if HPV positive
      2. Otherwise, return to routine screening
    2. Abnormal repeat testing
      1. See Pap Smear for guidelines
    3. Unsatisfactory sample again on repeat cytology
      1. Colposcopy
  3. Measures that may improve Pap Smear quality
    1. Obtain cytology during mid-cycle
    2. No intercourse for 24 hours before Pap Smear
    3. No vaginal preparations for 24 hours before Pap Smear

V. Management: Transformation Zone absent, but negative for intraepithelial lesion or malignancy

  1. Age 21-29 years old
    1. Continue routine screening
  2. Age 30 years or older
    1. HPV Negative
      1. Continue routine screening
    2. HPV Unknown
      1. Obtain HPV testing and manage based on result (preferred)
      2. Repeat cytology at 3 years
    3. HPV Positive
      1. Cytology and HPV testing in 1 year (co-testing) OR
      2. HPV Genotyping

VI. References

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