The Cytopathology division of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital evaluates specimens from various body sites for the detection of cancer, precancerous, organisms, and other benign conditions.  The lab provides preparatory and diagnostic services for gynecologic (PAP) specimens and non gynecologic specimens consisting of fluids, smears, and fine-needle aspirations.  The goals of the Cytology service include:

  • Maintaining excellence in specimen preparation and diagnostic accuracy.
  • Providing high quality intradepartmental and extra departmental consultative services for patients and colleagues.
  • Training Pathology residents, fellows, and medical students in diagnostic cytopathology
  • To incorporate advanced diagnostic and molecular techniques to improve diagnostic accuracy.
  • Providing on-site adequacy assessments in ultrasound, ENT and CT suites.

The Cytology laboratory process and screens about 5,000 specimens per year.  Of these around 2,000 are GYN specimens with the remainder being non-GYN specimens.  Pathologist performed fine-needle aspirations (FNAs) services are also provided at the referral of physicians.  HPV co-testing is provided on gynecologic pap specimens along with Chlamydia (CT) and Gonorrhea (NG) testing on our Roche Cobas® 4800 system.   The lab is fully accredited by The College of American Pathologists (CAP).  Cytopathology staff, including Pathologists and cytotechnologists, is tested yearly by the American Society for Clinical Pathology GYN proficiency test (PT) to maintain high diagnostic accuracy in gynecologic examination.

For more information and answers to frequently asked questions, download our Fine Needle Aspiration Procedure FAQ