im sorry if this has been asked before. 

at the end of June I went and had the mirena coil fitted. Whilst the doctor was fitting this she mentioned something about a cervicAl ulcer and that she wanted me to come back in two weeks to have a look. I went back and she took a smear. My previous smear was 2 years ago and all normal. 10 days ago I got a letter saying that the smear showed severe changes. I had a colposcopy yesterday. Before it the Dr explained that my smear had shown i had CIN 3, apparently smears are 70% accurate. She also explained the types of treatments and of she could clarify CIN 3 she would make an appointment for me to come back and get the treatment.

Anyway during the colposcopy, she told me that i would definitely need treatment and that it would need to be done under general anaesthetic as the area affected was too large to be done under local. She took 3 punch biopsies and told me that the results would be between 4-6 weeks. She never mentioned anything else about what she had saw or treatment. Is it normal for them to straight away say that u need treatment under general before the results of the biopsies! The unknown is horrible! 


Thanks tracy x


Hi Tracy

Try not to worry, your experience sounds pretty normal. The smear test is a pretty small sample of cells, and proper biopsies give them more to look at, so the biopsies can confirm with more certainty what level of changes you have. As you can see from my details below, this can be different from the smear - in my case the smear was just borderline, but the biopsies confirmed CIN 2 (moderate changes).

The doctor doing the colposcopy looks at these things all day long and will be able to hazard a guess at the level, mine guessed 1 or 2 and it came back as 1 with topical 2 (which means small areas of, apparently). So her being able to say that you will definitely need treatment is nothing to be alarmed about, it just means that the changes she can see look like the changes reported from your smear test. Same for doing it under GA - when they put the solutions on your cervix during the colposcopy, they can see how much of your cervix is affected, so would be able to tell at that point if the area needing removal is too large to practically do with a local anaesthetic.

It sounds like she will just wait for the biopsies to confirm what is already suspected, i.e. CIN3 or severe changes. Then you'll get booked in to have the bad bits removed under GA. I had mine done under GA, not because it was large but because I felt too much discomfort when they tried it with local, and it was absolutely fine. You wake up and it's all over :-)

Good luck, and hope you don't have to wait too long for your results





Hi Tracy, hope you’re doing ok with all this worry hanging over you. I had LLETZ treatment 6 months ago for what turned out to be moderate abnormalities (CIN 2) after my smear had shown “severe” changes so in effect it was downgraded. I think it’s really normal for them to comment during a colposcopy – I was treated on the very same day as the Dr could tell I needed treatment there and then. Also, they’ll have a really good idea whether the area needs to be treated under general anaesthetic or not because they carry out the procedure ALL the time so can see what they’re dealing with. Don’t be disheartened that the area was large as from what I can gather it is treated with exactly the same method as under local. The waiting for results and appointments etc. is definitely the worst part of this whole process. I’m currently waiting on the results of my 6 month follow up smear and it’s tough going when you’re as impatient as I am!! Haha. Big hugs and all the best xxxx

Thanks guys. That's really reassuring. The waiting is def the worst part of it all x