Abnormal Pap Smears Specialist

Providers JoEllen Embry WHNP and Barbara Lockwood WHNP offer patients the best care and treatment for abnormal pap smear results. When issues with a woman’s reproductive health occur, Mesa, AZ area patients can trust providers at Embry Women’s Health, to address all of their concerns.

Abnormal Pap Smears Q & A

What does it mean when my pap smear is abnormal?

When pap smear results come back as abnormal, it typically means that the cells harvested have exhibited some unusual changes. These unusual changes could be the result of a disease, a medical condition, or cancer.

What is a colposcopy exam?

If you have abnormal Pap smear results or HPV test, the doctor may recommend a colposcopy exam to identify abnormal cells on your cervix. Identifying these abnormal cells early on is essential since they may be a sign of inflammation or pre-cancerous changes that could develop into cervical cancer if left untreated. The colposcopy exam puts many women at ease after having an abnormal pap smear since they’re able to watch the exam as it’s happening and discuss the results immediately with their physician.

What causes cells to appear abnormal?

Cells obtained from the cervix can be affected by some conditions and illnesses. Abnormal results will usually fall into three groupings: irritated or irregular, precancerous, and cancerous. Irritated or irregular cells can be caused by swelling associated with an infection or hyperkeratosis, a condition where dried skin cells are present at the cervix. This is typical because the woman has used a cervical cap or diaphragm. Precancerous cells are those that appear to be in the preliminary stages just prior to malignancy, meaning they may become cancerous. These cells, as well as those which are irritated, will require further testing. When cancerous cells are found, treatment or procedure to assess and/or remove, the cells will need to be performed. This is usually done shortly after the results have been evaluated.

What treatments are used for abnormal cells?

Treatments used by the doctor will be tailored to fit the needs of each patient. If an infection or aggravation is causing the problem, the doctor will usually write a prescription for antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, or another form of prescription medication such as an antifungal. If the cells are precancerous, the doctor will want to evaluate the cells and in some instances perform a biopsy. If a biopsy reveals cancerous cells or if cancerous cells were found during the initial exam, the gynecologist will typically recommend that the tissue is removed. Removing the tissue can be achieved through a surgical operation. If the cancerous tissue is vast, more invasive surgeries could be required. The gynecologist will discuss all of the options, alternative treatments available, risks, and benefits with the patient to make sure that the best solution is chosen.


I first chose to come to Embry Womens Health because it was near my home and they took my insurance. I’ve been coming back because JoEllen is AMAZING! The whole office is so welcoming and comforting, I’ve moved 20 miles away and I STILL go to see JoEllen for all of my women’s healthcare. I will literally plan my days off around an appointment so I can continue being a patient here.
I can’t say enough good things about Embry Women’s Health and hope to be able to be a patient for life!

5 Stars – Yelp – 11/13/2019


I still love this place. It’s my second year as a patient here, and they still treat me so well. Every concern that I had was taken seriously and my doctor gave me some things to help with a couple of them. The office also isn’t really cold (which I’ve found to be a problem at some offices) so you won’t be freezing during your exam. She’s definitely the best doctor I have been to and recommend to every woman to look into coming here. Also, all of your test results are available online through a patient portal, and you can also schedule new appointments and fill out all of your patient information forms ahead of time on there. This makes checking in for your appointment super quick and easy.

5 Stars – Yelp – 10/31/2019


This was my first visit at this office and it was so much better then a visit I’ve had at a different gynecologist. The ladies were genuinely friendly and helpful and all very knowledgeable. They make you feel comfortable and safe. It’s so hard to find a gynecologist that fits your needs and I’m very happy to say I found mine.

5 Stars – Yelp – 4/10/2018



Embry Women’s Health is committed to providing quality, affordable health care. We’re in-network with all major insurance plans, including Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna and UnitedHealthcare. No insurance? No problem. We offer a simple fee schedule for those who wish to pay out-of-pocket. Click the button below for our complete list and more information:

Embry Women’s Health is no longer accepting insurance and will be a self-pay practice. We understand that our decision to no longer accept insurance may come as a disappointment. However, we carefully deliberated and concluded that this change was in the best interest of our practice.

Self Pay Prices:

New Patient Appointment: $200

Established Patient Appointment: $100

Self Pay Package Pricing coming soon!

If you have insurance, we will still send your information to any laboratories so they can still bill your insurance for testing.


Words from our patients

JoEllen is AMAZING! Not only is she professional- she makes your whole experience comfortable. If you’re looking for a professional that never judges your situation and treats you very well- I would definitely recommend this office!

5 Stars – Yelp

Patient Image Yelp Layna HLayna H., Yelp

It is refreshing to meet a practitioner who sees the whole patient and not just a series of symptoms. JoEllen is willing to spend the time to ask questions and really listen to the responses. I have seen JoEllen several times and I have always appreciated how much time she spends with each appointment and her pragmatic approach with solutions.  I feel like my health drives the appointment and not the schedule. Finding JoEllen’s practice was like finding a needle in a haystack, a caring practitioner who encourages patients to listen to their bodies and to be their own best advocate.

5 Stars – 10/11/2018

Patient Image Kathy NKathy N., Yelp

Friendly staff. JoEllen is incredibly kind, patient and answers all of my questions whenever I see her. I don’t feel like I am being rushed when I am there, it is very nice.

5 Stars – 10/4/2018

Patient Image Ashley DAshley D., Yelp

I was super impressed. NP Eva was wonderfully personable and professional. Front desk staff (thanks, Mia) was kind and thoughtful. They have snacks and drinks in the waiting room. It’s super clean and the view is lovely. It sits right on the lake at Dobson Ranch.

5 Stars – 5/24/2021

“I started seeing Joellen earlier this year and I have had nothing but good experiences every time I have gone back. She is very down to earth and listens to any concerns. I would highly recommend Embry Womens Health.”

5 stars – 09/28/2018

Patient Image Jeannie DJeannie D., Yelp