What is a colposcopy?
A colposcopy is a procedure that allows your physician to closely examine your cervix and vagina. The test can determine if you have abnormal tissue or cells that might turn into cervical cancer.
During the procedure, you lie down on an exam table with your feet in stirrups. Your physician inserts a speculum into your vaginal canal to gently open it and gain access to your cervix. They then insert a solution into the cervix to cleanse it, so they can get a better view of abnormal cells.
Using a colposcope, a specialized viewing tool with a bright light, your doctor examines the cervical area. They might collect a tissue sample if they see anything abnormal.
Many women have anxiety about the colposcopy procedure, but it’s pain-free and relatively quick.
Do I need a colposcopy?
Your doctor at Pure OBGYN might recommend a colposcopy exam if you get a Pap smear test that comes back abnormal. Colposcopy is the next routine exam to check for signs of cervical cancer.
Depending on the results of your colposcopy, your doctor might recommend the procedure again to monitor changes in the cervix over time. They may also suggest a colposcopy to diagnose inflammation in the cervix or genital warts.
What happens after a colposcopy exam?
If your physician at Pure OBGYN sees anything abnormal during your colposcopy exam, they generally collect a small sample of your cervical tissue and send it to a lab for a biopsy.
If the results of the biopsy are negative, your doctor may recommend that you get your next Pap smear test in a year. If the biopsy shows cancer cells, you and your physician will discuss the next steps.
Getting a colposcopy doesn’t mean you’re likely to have cancer, but if you do have cancerous cells in the cervix, early treatment can be very effective.
As long as you continue to have normal Pap smear tests after your first colposcopy, you generally won’t need this exam again.
To learn more about the colposcopy procedure at Pure OBGYN, click to book an appointment online or call the office today to speak with a team member.