Pap 3D2

Pap 3D2: A Pap test result

Have you received a Pap 3D2 result? Your gynecologist has probably explained that the Pap test is part of cervical cancer screening and that your smear test has detected altered cells, but not cancer cells. Being confronted with this information is certainly confusing and frightening. This article is intended to help you classify a Pap3D2 finding.

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Table of contents

When is a Pap test done?

The Pap test is an integral part of cervical cancer screening in Germany. It allows for various cell changes to be visible under the microscope. As such, Pap findings are divided into five groups, with Pap 3 being one of them.

Depending on their age, women can have a Pap test done free of charge by their gynecologist once a year or every three years. To do this, the doctor uses a brush to swab the cervix, then sends the sample to a laboratory.

What does my Pap 3D2 result mean?

The Pap 3 findings are in turn classified into different subgroups. Each number and letter in the designation has a specific meaning:

In this case, a Pap 3D2 finding is discussed. It refers to dysplasia findings with a greater tendency to regress. This sounds complicated, but it simply means that there are altered cells on the cervix. However, they will go away on their own. .

Pap 3D2 describes the degree of cell changes: Pap 3D2 means that there are moderate cell changes. As the findings are still in the Pap 3D group, the cell changes can also clear up on their own. However, there is a greater risk of these cell changes developing into cancer.

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Pap findings and their significance

The result of the Pap test is divided into different levels, which describe the degree of abnormality. In a medical context, Pap results are usually written using Roman numerals. For this reason, the table below also uses Roman numerals.

Findings Meanings
Pap 0 The cell smear is insufficient to make a diagnosis.
Pap I All cells are normal.
Pap II-a The smear is normal, but there have been abnormalities in the past.
Pap II There are minor cell changes, but cancer is not suspected.
Pap IIID 1 Altered cells have been found, but the risk of cancer development is low.
Pap IIID 2 Altered cells have been found and there is a risk that these will develop into cancer.
Pap III Altered cells have been found, but these cannot be clearly assessed. However, cancer cells have not yet been found.
Pap IV Severely altered cells have been found. There may already be severe tissue changes that could develop into cancer.
Pap V Malignant cells have been found. Cancer could be present.

Pap 3D2: What happens next?

A Pap 3D2 result is not a diagnosis. So what happens next? Now it’s time to keep calm and work with your gynecologist to determinethe risk of actually developing cervical cancer.

The cervical cancer screening program in Germany specifies how to proceed after certain abnormal findings. This blog post is based on this regulation, but it does not replace a detailed consultation with a doctor and does not exclude individual deviations!

In the case of a Pap 3D2 finding, a colposcopy – i.e. a vaginal endoscopy – will be performed within three months, regardless of the woman’s age. Meaning, a trained gynecologist will take a close look at the cervix under a special microscope.

Since not all gynaecologists offer a colposcopy, affected women usually have to wait for an appointment in a so-called dysplasia consultation.

Pap 3D2: Is there a chance of recovery?

With Pap 3D2 there is a chance of recovery. Although severe cell changes were found, this classification still belongs to the group of dysplasias with a greater tendency to disappear. This means that the cell changes can get better on their own.

However, the healing process can take a long time. We are talking months or even years. Two things are important to know:

  1. a long-lasting infection with human papilomaviruses, HPV for short, is responsible for the development of cervical cancer. An HPV infection can persist for months or years.
  2. cervical cancer develops via precursors. The aim of cervical cancer screening is to detect these precursors.

Those hoping there is a cure for altered cells will unfortunately be disappointed. The affected women must rely on a self-healing process and monitor this process with regular checks. This can be a stressful time for many women. Talk to your gynecologist if you feel anxious.

There are also other methods to clarify your Pap3D2 result. GynTect®, for example, is a test based on molecular biology. It doesn‘t look at the cell, but into the cell to examine the DNA.


The good news: a Pap 3D2 result is not a diagnosis of cervical cancer. It indicates that the Pap test has detected severely altered cells, but these can disappear. To be on the safe side, a vaginal endoscopy (colposcopy) should be performed within three months.

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On request, you will receive a free smear test kit, which is accompanied by a treatment contract. Only when we have received the swab sample together with the signed examination request in the laboratory do you undertake to pay the costs of 150 euros.

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  1. Titelbild: fizkes /
  2. Pap 3D2: Gibt es Heilungschancen?: Meghan Lamle / Unsplashed