Pap Smear

The Pap Smear Enhancements
HPL/DLS Cytology Service has incorporated all currently available technological developments to enhance the accuracy of cervical Pap smears.

  • AutoPap: The AutoPap system is routinely applied to all cases when traditional smears are submitted.
  • ThinPrep: A monolayer slide preparation that may improve the readability of the sample.

ThinPrep requires a special request from the patient with an additional out of pocket payment. The table below outlines the benefits and drawbacks of each technology as they affect the patient

Computerized Screening

Test Published Effect
on Accuracy
Delay of Turn
Around Time
Added Cost
to Patient
Other Benefits
To Patients
AutoPap by Neopath
(Primary screening)
– Decreased false negative results 1 Day *$0.00 None

* There may be a small charge for this service in the future if not covered by insurance.

Thinlayer Processing

Test Published Effect
on Accuracy
Delay of Turn
Around Time
Added Cost
to Patient
Other Benefits
To Patients
ThinPrep by Cytyc – Decrease false negative results
– Improved specificity
None $25.00 Reflex testing for HPV subtype

Technology Comparison: No direct side-by-side comparison exists between the two FDA approved methods. Both medthods improve accuracy. The AutoPap system is unique in that it is initially applied to all pap smears submitted to the laboratory. ThinPrep cytology may be useful in special situations. An example may include patients with repeated abnormal pap smears and negative or unsatisfactory colposcopic examination. Reflex HPV subtype study on the same sample in this situation may aid in decisions regarding additional diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. None of the methods eliminate false negative cases. It is still most important that patients receive annual exams to improve early cervical cancer detection.

  • For routine screening, AutoPap is currently felt to be a practical way to reduce false negative results.
  • ThinPrep can be considered in those requiring HPV subtype testing.
  • It is still most important that patients receive annual exams.

Additional information: The options and benefits related to cervical cancer screening technology are undergoing rapid change. For additional information call Pamela Tauchi-Nishi, M.D. or Thomas Namiki, M.D. at (808) 547-4271.

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