Specimen Collection

Pap Smears

General Considerations

  • Instruct patients not to use douche or lubricants for 24 hours prior to Pap.

  • Use non-lubricated speculum; get Pap prior to pelvic exam.

Collection

  1. Endocervix and ectocervix should be separately sampled.
  2. Entire ectocervix sampled by rotating a wooden or plastic Ayre spatula with pressure.
  3. Endocervix sampled with a pointed Ayre spatula rotating it 1-2 full turns (use of Cytobrush enhances cell recovery).
  4. Apply the material rapidly to a glass slide labeled in pencil with the patient's name and ID #; spread evenly.
  5. Fix the slide immediately by immersing it in 95% ethyl alcohol x 15 minutes, or spraying with aerosol or pump fixative.
  6. In older women, a posterior vaginal pool or cervical canal aspiration should be taken to detect endometrial lesions.

Collection of SurePath™ Thin Layer Cervical Sample

  1. Insert the Rover's Cervex-Brush® into the endo-cervical canal.
  2. Apply gentle pressure until the bristles form against the cervix.
  3. Maintaining gentle pressure, hold the stem between the thumb and forefinger and rotate the brush five times in a clockwise direction.
  4. Remove the Rover's Cervex-Brush® from the patient.
  5. Placing your thumb against the back of the brush, disconnect the entire brush from the stem, dropping it into the CytoRich® preservative vial.
  6. Place the cap on the vial and tighten.
  7. Label the vial with patient's full name and ID number and/or physician name and date.
  8. Complete the Cytopathology requisition form with the required information.
  9. Put the vial and the matching requisition into a specimen bag and send to the Cytopathology lab.

Storage of Non-Gynecological Cytology Specimens

  • Body cavity fluids (pleural, abdominal, pericardial). Store specimens in refrigerator (4°C - 8°C) - up to 48 hours. (During the regular laboratory hours, specimens should be sent directly to Cytology Laboratory immediately).
  • Sputum, bronchial washings, bronchioalveolar lavage (BAL). Store specimens in refrigerator (4°C - 8°C) - up to 48 hours. (During the regular laboratory hours, specimens should be sent directly to Cytology Laboratory immediately).
  • Spinal fluids, ventricular fluids, urine. Fix specimens (fluids) with equal amount of 50% Alcohol and store in refrigerator (4°C - 8°C). (During the regular laboratory hours, no fixative should be added to specimens. All specimens should be sent directly to Cytology Laboratory immediately).
  • Specimens collected during the weekends, holidays, and after the regular hours can be delivered and stored in the refrigerator outside the specimen receiving area of Cytopathology.

Reviewed 6/22/12 by Robert Stewart