Not all bodies are the same. One virgin may naturally be very loose, while another may naturally be very tight. Some women use tampons regularly, others, like myself, are too tight to fit even the most slender tampon through the vaginal opening. Now, after 4 kids, a whole hand can fit through there with no discomfort (I’ve let female med students and residents practice exams on me). On our Honeymoon, it took 3 days of slow, gentle stretching before my newlywed self and husband were able to have intercourse, and it was still very painful. Not everyone will physically feel the same way during a pap smear, just as childbirth is very different for everyone.
I'm 17 and looking to get birth control. According to my doctor, I need to get a pap smear/vaginal exam before I can get a prescription. Now, I'm kind of inclined to worry, and I hate doctor appointments to begin with, so I would be worried about a pap smear anyway. Except there's one thing that really worries me: I'm still a virgin. (In fact, the bc is to regulate my period. I have no intention of becoming sexually active for awhile.) Apparently when they do pap smears they check your uterus — I have a feeling that the whole breaking my hymen with a metal speculum is going to hurt. (Just a feeling, of course . . ) Does anyone have any advice/wisdom/warnings to calm my nerves before the dreaded exam?
In the last decade, there have been successful attempts to develop automated, computer image analysis systems for screening.  Although, on the available evidence automated cervical screening could not be recommended for implementation into a national screening program, a recent NHS Health technology appraisal concluded that the 'general case for automated image analysis ha(d) probably been made'.  Automation may improve sensitivity and reduce unsatisfactory specimens.  Two systems have been approved by the FDA and function in high-volume reference laboratories, with human oversight. [ citation needed ]