Pap Test: ThinPrep® with Reflex to Human Papillomavirus (HPV-HR) DNA Probe, High Risk

CPT Code(s):

  • 88141
  • 88142
  • If reflexed to HPV, add 87621, high-risk HPV

Note: A negative result does not rule out the presence of an HPV genotype absent for the test panel, a low-level infection or specimen sampling error.

Specimen Requirements:

  • Cervical Brushes: Specimens must be collected prior to the application of acetic acid or iodine if a colposcopic examination is being performed. The samples should be collected by using a Digene cervical brush and stored in Digene STM solution.
  • Cervical Biopsies: Specimens must be freshly collected, 2 – 5 mm in cross section. The biopsy specimen must be placed immediately into 1 mL of STM and stored frozen.
  • Specimens in ThinPrep® Cytyc PreservCyt™ Solution: There must be at least 4 mL of PreservCytsolution remaining for the HPV DNA test.

Storage/Transport Temperature: Submit specimens according to Biological Substance, Category B, shipping guidelines.

  • Unacceptable Conditions:
    • Lack of a properly completed requisition (especially federally required information)
    • Insufficient pertinent clinical history
    • Obscuring inflammation, debris or excessive air-drying
    • Always record if a cytobrush was used to perform the Pap test.
    • Failing to record the use of a cytobrush may result in erroneous atypical results for the patient.
  • Stability (collection to initiation of testing):
    • Ambient:
      • ThinPrep®: 3 weeks at 4° – 37° C


A Pap smear examines the cells of the cervix and detects cell abnormalities. Both, cancerous and precancerous cells can be detected. Pap tests are recommended in women ages 21 – 64, every two years with normal Pap results. Vaginal Pap smears can also be performed but must be noted on the requisition.

The ThinPrep® Pap test addresses these limitations with liquid-based preparation, improving specimen adequacy and significantly increasing test sensitivity. The ThinPrep® Pap test is the first test of this kind. Since its
introduction, it has contributed to a further 28% reduction in invasive cervical cancers in the United States.1

1 Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program. SEER Database: Incidence – SEER 9 Regs Public-Use, Nov. 2004 Sub (1973-2002), National Cancer Institute, DCCPS, Surveillance Research Program, Cancer Statistics Branch, released April 2005, based on November 2004 submission.

Women with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance should be managed using a program of either repeat cervical cytopathology testing, immediate colposcopy or DNA testing for high-risk types of HPV. Testing for
HPV DNA is the preferred approach when liquid-based cytopathology is used for screening. All women who test positive for high-risk HPV DNA should be referred for colposcopic evaluation. Women with ASC-US who test negative for high-risk HPV DNA can be followed up with repeat cytologic testing at 12 months (2001 ASCCP Guidelines – JAMA 2002; 287:2120-2129).

A positive high-risk HPV test result indicates that the patient may be infected with one or more of the following HPV genotypes: 16, 18, 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59 and 68, which are associated with cervical cancer and its precursor lesions; however, cross-reactions with other genotypes may occur. Results shouldbe correlated with cytologic/histologic findings.


ThinPrep® 2000 system/routine cytopathologic evaluation/nucleic acid probe


5 – 7 days