Pap Smear During Ovulation?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
My husband and I are trying to get pregnant and I noticed that I am scheduled for a physical and a pap smear during the time I am ovulating. Will having a pap smear during ovulation affect my chances of getting pregnant?

As a follow up, would it be "safe" to schedule a pap smear for a week following the last day of my ovulation?

ANSWER

Possibly, if some of the sperm are wiped away to do the exam. That time would not be my first choice for when to do the pap.If you are trying to conceive, I would think the best time would be just after your menses, and well before you ovulate. You would know that you are not pregnant then.

On the other hand, I have never heard of a pap smear causing a miscarriage.

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.