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Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 10 (2002), Issue 4, Pages 203-207

Comparison of Gram Stain and Pap Smear Procedures in the Diagnosis of Bacterial Vaginosis

1Pathology Department, SSK Izmir Training Hospital, Izmir, Turkey
2SSK Ege Maternity Hospital, Izmir, Turkey
3915 Sok. No: 170, Osmangazi, Bornova, Izmir, Turkey

Received 6 July 2000; Accepted 1 April 2002

Copyright © 2002 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective: The purpose of this study was to examine the characteristics of Gram stain versus Pap smear in diagnosis of bacterial vaginosis (BV).

Methods: One-thousand and sixty women were enrolled in this study. All cases with symptoms of BV were determined by Amsel's criteria, which were accepted as the gold standard for diagnosis of BV. Pap smear and Gram stain evaluations were compared according to Amsel's criteria, without viewing the clinical results of the patients. Gram stain and Pap smear results were determined as negative or positive according to Amsel’s criteria. Sensitivity, specifity and positive predictive values were calculated.

Results: After accepting the cases that were diagnosed as BV according to Amsel's criteria as reference cases, the sensitivity of the Gram stain method was calculated as 97% and the sensitivity of the Pap smear method as 93%. Similar specificity rates were obtained with both methods in diagnosis of BV related to the clinical results. There were no statistically significant differences in diagnosis of BV between these two groups.

Conclusion: If Amsel's criteria are accepted as the gold standard for diagnosis of BV, Gram stain and Pap smear methods will give similar results in diagnosis.