know the importance of this examination
A cytology is an examination to detect cellular changes induced by pathological processes.
There are two main types of cytology: exfoliative cytology (gynecologic and non-gynecologic) and aspiration.
This examination allows the removal of cells from a particular tissue or organ of the body, from which, after analysis under the microscope, it is possible to evaluate their growth and function.
Cytology can be used to study bumps, fluids and body secretions. Examples are cervical cells, pleural fluid, ascitic fluid, joint fluid, urine or sputum.
Types of cytology and their importance
Cytology is used to analyze cells taken from an organ, cavities or anatomical spaces.
Cytology can be: gynecological exfoliative, non-gynecological exfoliative or by aspiration. Its main characteristics are as follows:
Gynecological exfoliative cytology
Gynecologic exfoliative cytology, also called cervico-vaginal cytology or Pap smear, is a screening test for cervical cancer. This cytology helps to prevent the appearance of this cancer and contributes to its early diagnosis and treatment, reducing deaths caused by this disease by 80%.
In addition, this cytology allows the detection of sexually transmitted bacteria, such as chlamydia. To do this, cells are taken from the outer surface of the cervix, which are then sent for laboratory analysis.
The test can be performed by a gynecologist or a general practitioner.
This is a quick procedure that may cause some discomfort, especially if there is muscle tension in the pelvic area. The methods used to perform this examination may be conventional or liquid-based cytology.
When to do
In general, gynecologic exfoliative cytology begins at about age 25 (or when the woman begins her sexual life) and is repeated every three years until the person reaches age 65.
In other cases, the exam may be repeated every five years if accompanied by a high-risk HPV test.
In order not to interfere with slide preparation and reading, cytology should not be performed if the woman is menstruating or if, within 48 hours before the test is performed, she has had her period:
- has had sexual intercourse;
- I did vaginal irrigations;
- Used contraceptive foams, creams, jellies, or certain medications applied vaginally.
Non-gynecological exfoliative cytology
This type of cytology is characterized by the collection of cells present in washings, brushes, or secretions, from organs such as the lung, serous cavities (abdominal and pleural), and urine.
Through its analysis, it may be possible to detect malignant and/or pre-malignant cells.
Aspiration cytology, also called fine-needle aspiration (FNA) or fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC), is used to collect cells from palpable organ or tissue nodules, which are then analyzed to characterize the type of lesion.
To perform this examination, a fine-gauge needle attached to a syringe is used to collect the cells, by aspiration.
This examination must be performed by a medical pathologist. It is a simple, relatively quick and only uncomfortable procedure, which can be relieved by the use of a topical anesthetic spray.
A The technique used to perform these examinations may also vary.. Thus, we can speak of :
Gynecological or non-gynecological cytology in which the collected cells are spread on a histological glass slide, fixed and stained with Papanicolaou stain.
Thin layer cytology
Cytology fixed in a liquid medium and processed automatically, facilitating medical evaluation.
It is important to do this examination regularly, be attentive to your health!
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