Confused and don't know what to do

Okay firstly I sincerely apologise if this is inappropriate to post here but I am a bit worried and confused and was wondering if anyone has been in my situation o if anyone could give me some advice.

So I am a 28 (nearly 29) year old who has been having bleeding between periods for 5 months, my periods have never been regular (apart from for a little bit last year) I have always just been told it was my hormones and nothing to worry about. My last bleed has lasted for one month and has been exceptionally heavy at times. I will admit right now that I am not up to date with my cervical screenings because when I went at 25 it was excruiciatingly painful (had me in tears it hurt so badly) and I bled for a week afterwards but it came back normal so I didn't think anything more of it. I did receive my invite at 28 but put it off and then forgot about it because I have not been in a relationship since I was 19 and the one at 25 was normal.

So I went to my GP with this persistant bleeding/abdominal and back pain and she took some swabs which again was very painful and said she would refer me to gynae and call me if the swabs showed anything (never heard from her so assumed they were clear). Anway had persistant bleeding, abdominal pain and lower back pain along with occasional nausea, dizzy spells, light headedness and constipation (which I normally get a week before my period).

I saw the gynaecologist today, had a lovely young junior doctor take my history and I showed him the symptom diary I had kept for the past month detailing everything that was going on. He presented the case to his SPR who came in, asked me a couple of questions including when my last smear was and I said at 25 and it was clear. I think she may have thought I am younger than I am but I had already explained to the junior that I hadn't had a smear since due to the awful first time and that I am nearly 29 now. She said she would examine me. As soon as she inserted the speculum I nearly hit the roof and my mum says she heard me cry out in pain all the way out in the waiting room. She said I had cervical ectropia and there was nothing they could do it was a commen condition that would go away on its own.

She said she would send me for a scan (what type I don't know) just to make sure everything was okay but didn't need to see me again if it was fine. She asked if I had any questions at at the time I didn't because she had said what it basically was and that it was a commen condition and that it would go away on its own. I don't even know if she took any swabs but I was in too much pain to think straight at that point in time.

I came home and had to immediately take painkillers and I am still in a lot of pain despite the fact my examination was nearly 3 hours ago. Naturally I wanted to know more about the condition (considering I had refrained from searching before my appointment as I know how easy it is to scare yourself with self diagnosis), to see if there was anything I could be doing to help relieve the symptoms. I looked for it and discovered that it doesn't seem to explain all of my symptoms nor do I really fit the demographoc (I am not a teenager, I am not on any contraception, I am not pregnant and have not had a relationship since I was 19) and that it can be similar to early cervical cancer (which really scared me).

My concern is that she has misunderstood when it was that I had my last smear test and thinks I have had a uptodate one and has not paid any attention to the fact that I am getting significant abdominal and back pain as well as bleeding. I know the chances of it being cancer are very small (I used to work in cancer care so I know there are other conditions which are more likely) but cervical ectopia doesn't seem to fit all of my symptoms either. I don't doubt that I may have the condition I just feel like aspects of my symptoms haven't been addressed.

I feel very confused and now a little bit worried that they have missed something. My mum has suggested I call up the doctors tomorrow to arrange a smear test (because I don't know if they took any swabs today or what) just to put my mind at rest and I must admit that thought makes me shake due to it hurting so badly every other time.

I was wondering has anyone else gone through anything even remotely similar and whether or not others have had such painful experience when having internal examinations? 

Any advice you could offer me would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance

Hi, sorry i cant help with your back/tummy pain and bleeding questions but the pain on examination i can fully understand. I find these examinations very painfull due to vaginismus but i have an understanding GP who prescribes diazapam everytime i need a smear and for my last two colposcopys. It certainly helps relax me enough for the examinations to take place but means my lletz have to be under GA as i cant relax enough for them to be able to do it while i'm awake. If you decide to ask for another smear then maybe give your gp a call and explain how hard you find it and see if they would be willing to prescribe you something to help you relax. It would mean you would need a lift to and from your appointments but it would be worth it to feel more comfortable and hopefully make any future examinations bearable, good luck, Heidi x

Hey hunny, think you've been through quite abit today :( first thing, I think your mum is right you definitely do need to go for your smear so get it booked, maybe go and see your gp tomorrow, explain your concerns, book a smear at the same time, ask the doctor for some diazepam to take before your smear, which will help you relax. I think the nurse has misunderstood when your last smear was as otherwise she would have insisted you booked it surely. As for the scan have you looked into polycystic ovaries? I had a scan on Friday due to lower abdo pain, and I have polycystic ovaries, yet I have regular periods and no other symptoms at all. You mentioned your periods being irregular and obviously the pains etc. so maybe your scan will be to check your ovaries. Please do book your smear as bad of an experience you've had before its worth it 100% worth it. Wish you the best of luck xxxx

Thank you for such a quick reply, its reassuring that I am not the only one who experiences this type of pain I've seen so many people say how easy it was and there was only slight discomfort when I was in absolute agony with it.

Thank you for the advice too I think I will do that :-)

Thank you for the quick reply. I had a cyst removed during my appendectomy aged 18 and was told that was normal for girls my age. Then had an ultrasound scans when I was 24 due to seven month gap in periods but that came back normal.

I think I am going to have to bite the bullet and go for it but see my GP first to see if she will prescribe something as you and flossyplops have suggested. 

Thank you for your advice I appreciate it

No problem :) I had a transvaginal scan around 3-4 years ago and that was fine, normal. But this was for the exact same pain that I went to this scan for where they then said its PCO. Yeh diazapem sounds like a good idea for you, hope everything is ok xxx

well I called up today for a smear test and the next available appointment is on the 16th April!!! I am going to try and see my doctor tomorrow morning to see if she can do it or get it sooner for me.

It was my paternal grandmothers funeral today and I saw cousins who I haven't see in years and we got talking and one of them mentioned having had a hysterectomy at 26 (she is now 29). I asked why and she said for severe endometriosis and PCO. I told her I was having problems and she began asking me questions and said my symptoms are very similar to hers. Apparently all the girls on my paternal grandmothers side have had issues with these conditions and several of them have had abnoramilities in smears tests, so there is a family history of stuff that I knew nothing of.

I'm going to present my new findings to my GP and see what she says.