16 doctors weighed in:

What is the first thing you do when you find stage IV cancer on a pap smear..Schedule surgery or chemo or what exactly?

16 doctors weighed in
Dr. Dennis Higginbotham
Obstetrics & Gynecology
8 doctors agree

In brief: Biopsy the cervix

The pap smear is a screening test to determine who needs further evaluation of the cervix.
The pap smear gives some indication of what is likely to be found, but is not definitively diagnostic.If the pap smear is abnormal, that woman needs addition workup that would include a colposcopy and probably biopsies to determine exactly what is going on and how extensive it is, which would guide treatment.

In brief: Biopsy the cervix

The pap smear is a screening test to determine who needs further evaluation of the cervix.
The pap smear gives some indication of what is likely to be found, but is not definitively diagnostic.If the pap smear is abnormal, that woman needs addition workup that would include a colposcopy and probably biopsies to determine exactly what is going on and how extensive it is, which would guide treatment.
Dr. Dennis Higginbotham
Dr. Dennis Higginbotham
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Dr. Miguel Cano
Obstetrics & Gynecology
3 doctors agree

In brief: Pap isn't Dx

You can't diagnose cervical cancer on a pap smear alone.
The diagnosis requires a full thickness biopsy, complete pelvic exam, & a knowledge of how extensive or large the cancer is. Stage IV is not treatable with surgery and needs evaluation by a gyn oncologist to decide if chemo and/or radiation will help. Stage IV means spread to other organs and is difficult to treat.

In brief: Pap isn't Dx

You can't diagnose cervical cancer on a pap smear alone.
The diagnosis requires a full thickness biopsy, complete pelvic exam, & a knowledge of how extensive or large the cancer is. Stage IV is not treatable with surgery and needs evaluation by a gyn oncologist to decide if chemo and/or radiation will help. Stage IV means spread to other organs and is difficult to treat.
Dr. Miguel Cano
Dr. Miguel Cano
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Dr. Chakshu Gupta
Pathology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Speak to your Doctor

One cannot find stage IV cancer on a pap smear.
The pap smear is a screening test that looks at the cells lining the cervix or vagina for abnormal cells. If suspicious cells are found, additional testing and biopsy is done. Few abnormal pap smears will eventually turn out to be cancerous but screening for them with regular pap smears can help prevent cancer or catch it early when it can be cured.

In brief: Speak to your Doctor

One cannot find stage IV cancer on a pap smear.
The pap smear is a screening test that looks at the cells lining the cervix or vagina for abnormal cells. If suspicious cells are found, additional testing and biopsy is done. Few abnormal pap smears will eventually turn out to be cancerous but screening for them with regular pap smears can help prevent cancer or catch it early when it can be cured.
Dr. Chakshu Gupta
Dr. Chakshu Gupta
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Dr. Liawaty Ho
Internal Medicine - Hematology & Oncology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Stage IV

Means that it has spread beyond the primary area(bladder/ or rectum) or goes to distant organ.
In general, chemotherapy will be the treatment for a stage IV ca.Surgery and/or radiation would sometimes be recommended for specific reasons- such as if there is pathologic fractures/ or painful bone metastases; a blockage to the bladder from the cancer etc. Discuss in detail with your physicians. Gbu.

In brief: Stage IV

Means that it has spread beyond the primary area(bladder/ or rectum) or goes to distant organ.
In general, chemotherapy will be the treatment for a stage IV ca.Surgery and/or radiation would sometimes be recommended for specific reasons- such as if there is pathologic fractures/ or painful bone metastases; a blockage to the bladder from the cancer etc. Discuss in detail with your physicians. Gbu.
Dr. Liawaty Ho
Dr. Liawaty Ho
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1 comment
Dr. Craig Keathley
My concern with this question is basing a diagnosis on a pap smear. I agree with Dr. Gupta above-- a pap smear is not a diagnostic test for cancer and certainly cannot provide a stage. This patient should have someone familiar with cervical screening guidelines and terminology review her pap.
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