You can ask for a female nurse or doctor to carry out the test. You will be asked to remove your pants, lie on a couch and bend your knees.
The nurse or doctor will gently insert a speculum into your vagina, to hold it open, to allow them to see your cervix before taking the smear.
If you prefer you can ask to insert the speculum yourself.
A small brush is then used, through the speculum, to gently touch your cervix and take a sample of cells. They will be sent to a lab for testing.
The test takes about 5 minutes and may be a little uncomfortable but not painful, you should be able to carry on as normal afterwards.
What happens next? You will get your results in the post within 4 weeks. If your test is OK you will be asked to have another smear test in 3 years. Sometimes the test may need to be repeated because not enough cells have been collected and sometimes changes are detected.
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