My Abnormal Smear and Colposcopy

Some posts here on ARoseTintedWorld may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click a link and buy a product or register, then I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you. I may also use products from the companies mentioned in these posts. Thank you for supporting my blog!

Last week I wrote about how uptake for the smear test or pap test is at an all time low. More and more women are neglecting to go for their regular PAP tests. But this test is so important as it is a vital screening against cervical cancer. Maybe women are concerned about what will be next if something does come back from the test as abnormal? Well, here is the story of my abnormal smear and colposcopy that followed it.

My Abnormal Smear and Colposcopy

My Abnormal Smear and Colposcopy

 

Back at the start of 2012 I got my regular reminder to go for my smear test. I wasn’t too happy about this. The last smear test that I had had done in 2007 was done by my old GP. And it had really hurt, she had been so rough. Also, she had told me that there was a bit of bleeding in my sample. But it had come back clear, so I wasn’t concerned about anything else.

The day of my test came and I went in to see the nurse. I was nervous, but just hoped that she would be more gentle than the GP last time. And I needn’t have worried because she was. But she seemed a little puzzled as she said that again there was a spot of blood in my sample. She called for a second nurse to come take a look at my cervix. And together they agreed that my cervix seemed to have what they called an ‘erosion’.

I went home and checked Dr Google. A cervical erosion in itself didn’t seem to be a problem. It could just be a sign that part of my cervix was covered in cells from inside my cervical canal (the canal between the cervix and the womb)

Letter

But then the letter came. My smear had come back abnormal. And I was asked to return for another test. Quite often, the cause for an abnormal smear is the HPV virus. And that was the case with myself. My test was positive for HPV.

My GP told me that I was going to be referred for a colposcopy. This procedure is when they look at the cervix in more detail to determine what treatment is needed after an abnormal smear.  So I waited for that appointment.

Colposcopy

A few weeks later I sat with my mum in the waiting room of one of the local hospitals. I was called through and asked to change into a gown. A really kind nurse asked if I had any questions, but I hadn’t really. I just wanted the next few minutes over with.

They sat me in a special chair with my legs in supports. As with the smear test, a speculum was used so that the consultant could see my cervix clearly. But this time a camera was used with a colposcope attachment to see my cervix more clearly. I was amazed to see my cervix magnified up onto a tv screen in front of me!

I was shown the area of erosion on my cervix. Sure enough this was a clear ring of a different colour, as it was cells from inside my cervical canal. The consultant reassured me that this was relatively normal, and not a cause for concern. Though I may bleed between periods occasionally.

But my mouth went dry when he showed me a white patch of cells on the redder part of my cervix. He explained that this wasn’t really a good sign, and there was obviously some changes occurring in these cells. A biopsy of these cells would need to be taken. He would remove these cells using a hot sharp tool.

Biopsy

I steeled myself for some real pain, but was surprised not really to feel a lot of discomfort. I was told that this patch would be sent of as a biopsy for testing. And that I would get the results in about 4-6 weeks.

I was told that I couldn’t have sex for a few days, that I may have some cramps afterwards and that I may have a few days of light bleeding, but that I shouldn’t use tampons.

After the Colposcopy

Sure enough, the next day I had really bad period-like cramps. And some brown spots of bleeding. But this went off within a few days. And when the results of the biopsy came back a few weeks later, they were pleased to tell me that the cells that they had removed were not precancerous.

Even after my abnormal smear and colposcopy, I have no hesitation in saying that I would always attend my smear tests. It is never as bad as the alternative.

Have you forgotten or failed a recent smear test appointment? Contact your GP now.

Why not pin this to remind you?

My Abnormal Smear and Colposcopy

 

 

Musings Of A Tired Mummy
Mix It Up Linky

23 Replies to “My Abnormal Smear and Colposcopy”

  1. Kaye Gambles says:

    Hi Jo
    That is no ‘fun’ but the choice between that and the alternative is a no brainer.
    Glad you’re OK. I’ve had to go through that twice so I know what it’s like. Xxxx

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      Exactly. Better to be safe than not. Thank you for reading.

      Reply
  2. Kirsty says:

    Thank you for writing this! It’s such an important issue and so scary when you get called back after a smear. It’s happened to me twice now and both times I’ve panicked. Fortunately, further tests have been negative both times. Thanks for also reminding me to book my next smear! #Globalblogging

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      Thank you for reading. And good to know that you were in the clear.

      Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      That cannot be nice. Even going 3 yearly was hard. I’m glad it has settled.

      Reply
  3. Raisie Bay (@RaisieBay) says:

    I so admire you sharing this, it will give comfort to some I’m sure. I’ve never had an abnormal smear test but I’d be worried sick if I was sent for further tests, and until reading your post I’d had no idea what this would involve. I’m glad your tests came back negative, what a relief. Can I just ask you though, how long was it before they told you your smear test was abnormal and you’d have to go back for testing, was it quicker than normal results?
    #mmbc

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      It was still a couple of weeks wait for the abnormal smear test to return. But yes, I do want to reassure people that even an abnormal result need not be too scary.

      Reply
  4. Lisa Pomerantz says:

    I do hope in 4-6 weeks time, you will have all good news. Sending healing and healthy thoughts your way, love.
    #mixitup xoxo

    Reply
  5. This Scribbler Mum says:

    Great post. It is important to attend these appointments to stay on top of our health. We should be thankful that they are available for us because there are others who don’t get the same privilege. #MixItUp
    This Scribbler Mum recently posted…Pancake DayMy Profile

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      I totally agree. Having read recently how much insulin costs in the USA and what people need to do to stay healthy, I am so glad for the NHS.

      Reply
  6. Rosie Doal says:

    It’s so important to get a regular smear. I’d rather know if there is an issue than pretend it doesn’t exist. I always appreciate posts like this which serve as a wake-up call and a reminder x #MixItUp

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      I just really wanted people to see that am abnormal smear is not always to be worried too much about either! But it is so important just to get the smear test done.

      Reply
  7. Heather Keet says:

    I’m so happy to hear the final report came back with everything looking fine! I had an abnormal once and it cleared up on its own within a year and they still have no reason for the result. It’s just a reminder that we must always look after our health by doing preventative screenings. #GlobalBlogging

    Reply
    1. Jo Boyne says:

      Thank you Heather. You are right, it is so important that we do these screenings.

      Reply
  8. Medlife offers says:

    First of all, I would like thank to god you are ok and I also want to thank you for sharing this blog with us. you did a great job. I am proud of you. keep sharing with us.

    Reply
  9. Sarfras says:

    Good that you have made people aware of this by writing this post. Regular medical checkups are something which we always keep on the backburner although it should be our top priority

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.