Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

  • Hebrew
  • English
  • Espnaol
  • Francais
  • donate

Relations after Pap smear

5 November, 2009


My understanding is that bleeding after a pap smear would not cause you to become niddah. I always bleed lightly for about a day after my exam. My husband and I are trying to conceive so I have recently stopped taking oral contraceptives. Since then my cycles have been irregular. I scheduled an appointment with my doctor for a preconception evaluation not knowing at what point in my cycle I would be. The appointment is tomorrow and the past 2 days I have noted signs that I may ovulate soon, according to the FAM method. My question is, should we avoid intercourse while I am bleeding post–pap smear? Is there anything else I should know about how to avoid becoming niddah from this bleeding? Would it be better if I asked the doctor not to do the pap at this visit?

Thank you so much for your help:


While you are correct that bleeding subsequent to a Pap smear would not render you niddah since it is caused by trauma to the cervix, it still is preferable to avoid intercourse until the staining subsides. You should wear colored underwear or pantiliners and avoid looking at toilet paper immediately after urinating as well. Please note that even if you did find a stain on white underwear or on your skin, you would not be rendered niddah since the blood may be attributed to trauma. However, it is preferable to avoid these situations by taking the precautions against stains mentioned above. You can read our article on stains for further details.

Thus, it would be preferable to reschedule the Pap smear for another time, but if that is not possible, as long as your doctor can confirm that any subsequent bleeding is due to trauma and not uterine, relations are technically permitted. You should be very careful after relations to wait a few minutes and then clean yourself and your husband with colored tissues or a towel and do not look for any staining since blood found after relations is halachically problematic.

Please feel free to get back to us with any further questions. 

This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

For further questions or comments: 

The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.

Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under

Accessibility Toolbar