Cytology deals with the study of cells in terms of structure, composition, function and chemistry.

Conventional Pap Test

The conventional Pap Test is designed for the prevention and early detection of precancerous and cancerous cervical lesions.

Liquid Cytology

Liquid cytology can also detect precancerous and cancerous cervical lesions. It was created to replace the conventional Pap test and overcome its limits. Liquid cytology is an important improvement compared to the conventional Pap test due to a better sample quality which leads to a more accurate diagnostic.

CDL Laboratories offers the liquid cytology technology also known as the ThinPrep® Pap Test.

The ThinPrep® Pap Test is approved by the FDA and the Health Protection Board of Canada.

Collection Procedure

The physician collects cells from the cervix and places the sample in a vial containing a preservative solution instead of smearing it on a glass slide (i.e. the conventional Pap test). As a result, the sample is much more representative of the cervical region than the conventional Pap test. Once the laboratory receives the sample, it is inserted in an automated instrument which transfers the sample onto a slide, resulting in a clear and precise sample for diagnostic purposes.

The Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)

HPV is the most common viral sexually transmitted infection. Certain types of high risk HPVs are the cause of cervical cancers and precancers.

HPV is detected in cervical cells, which are collected directly using a cervical brush or indirectly from liquid-based cytology.

Why should women take this test?

HPV DNA testing has an 85 to 100% sensitivity in detecting cervical cancers and precancers compared to 50% for the conventional Pap Test.

In cases where the ThinPrep® Pap Test result is equivocal, it is highly recommended to perform the HPV DNA viral typing test for a more accurate diagnostic. The high degree of diagnostic performance of the HPV DNA test eliminates the need for additional testing (i.e. colposcopy) by 50%.

Turn-around Time

  • Conventional Pap Test: 3-5 days
  • ThinPrep® Pap Test: 3-5 days
  • HPV DNA viral typing: 3-6 days
  • ThinPrep® Pap Test and HPV DNA viral typing: 3-6 days

CDL is the first private medical diagnostic laboratory in Quebec to introduce liquid-based cytology and viral typing for cervical cancer screening.

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