An abnormal Pap smear doesn’t necessarily mean you have cervical cancer. To get the answers you need, the team at Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates in Atlanta, Georgia, performs a colposcopy to closely examine your cervical tissue to look for signs of abnormalities. To schedule an appointment with the patient-centered women’s health experts, call the office on Peachtree Road or Collier Road, or book an appointment online today.
A colposcopy is a gynecological procedure that allows your OB/GYN at Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates to closely examine your vulva, vagina, and cervix to look for signs of abnormalities or disease.
During the procedure, your provider uses a colposcope, which is an imaging device with a light that magnifies the tissue, allowing your provider to see abnormalities not visible with the naked eye.
Your provider at Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates explains why you may benefit from a colposcopy. The team most often performs the diagnostic test following abnormal results from a Pap smear, which is a screening test for cervical cancer.
However, the team may also recommend a colposcopy to confirm or rule out other gynecological conditions such as genital warts or inflammation of the cervix (cervicitis).
Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates provides guidelines on how to prepare for your colposcopy. In general, there is little preparation needed.
However, your provider requests that you abstain from sexual intercourse and not insert any products into your vagina (tampons) for up to 48 hours before the procedure. They also request you schedule the colposcopy when you’re not menstruating.
The colposcopy is an in-office procedure that usually takes no more than 20 minutes. During the procedure, you lie back on the exam table with your knees bent and legs spread, similar to your pelvic exam.
Your provider inserts a speculum in your vagina to open the vaginal walls and then positions the colposcope a few inches from your vulva and examines your cervical tissue.
They use a cotton swab to clear away any mucus and apply a special solution that highlights tissue abnormalities. Your OB/GYN takes a biopsy of any abnormal tissue.
You shouldn’t feel any discomfort during your colposcopy, but you may feel a slight pinching during a biopsy.
If your provider at Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates didn’t take any tissue samples, you can resume your usual activities after your colposcopy. You may experience some light bleeding or spotting for a day or two.
However, if you had a biopsy, the team recommends you avoid sexual intercourse and tampons for at least a week. You may have spotting and vaginal pain for a few days following the biopsy.
For patient-centered care from an experienced team, call Atlanta Obstetrics & Gynecology Associates, or book an appointment online today.