Really relieved to find this website after a horrible time lately of worrying. Impressed by everyone's attitude and hoping you won't find me too pathetic if I explain why I am so very worried at the moment. My story so far (sorry for rambling I just need to get this out):
Ended up 'in the system' for cervical screening since age 21 when I had some intense abdominal pain, which is turned out to be caused by something else. Had a fair few 'borderline changes' ones and I also remember coming up positive for HPV at one stage. Then I had a normal one in October 2010. Nothing since.
At the same time, I have had a moderate cervical ectropion which was first noticed during the very first cervical screening I had. Cervix bled slightly on contact. Was told it was down to hormonal changes etc and was very common. Put up with it ever since and did occasionally get abnormal bleeding, which docs always said would be caused by this, was normal etc.
I am very conscious about cervical cancer and always keen to be screened. Had a smear done in October 2013. However, having put me through taking the sample this was rejected by the lab because it wasn't due. Got an apology letter etc. I was confused as it was due - it had been over 3 years since my last one. Also in the last year the abnormal bleeding has got a lot more severe, and led to some frankly horrific scenes sometimes during sex. I was unhappy with this and went back to my GP asking for a cervical screening and also explaining all the issues with the bleeding. I was examined at that point again and was told I had a large ectropion. She said she was 'not allowed' to do a smear as according to the system I was not due one until October 2014, but she would take some swabs to check for chlamydia and a few other infections and would also refer me to gynae dept of the hospital who would be able to treat the ectropion. I said again that I strongly felt a check should be done for pre cancerous cells/actual cancer, but was told the hospital would have to do this as the lab would just reject any smear they sent.
I waited patiently several weeks for my hospital appointment about the ectropion, and well...it was horrible. Had a newly qualified doctor - which is fine, everyone has to learn - but she couldn't find my cervix for the first 10 minutes and I was being examined for almost 40 minutes. There was so much blood. She cauterised the ectropion with silver nitrate. Afterwards I was told that they hadn't carried out a smear as this was 'something for my GP'. Obviously by that point my cervix was very much cauterised so there wasn't anything I was able to do, so I had to trudge home, rather shakey.
That was 2 weeks ago and I just went back to the GP today because I really am very unhappy that they are refusing to check for anything more serious, especially given my cancer screening was overdue anyway. She checked my records again and agreed that I was overdue a screening - the last check on file was the one in 2010 and said it should be repeated in 12 months due to previous abnormal results (I don't remember that bit at all). She took a smear straight away and said she would make sure it got processed. However, she was concerned because when she took the sample there was a lot of new blood - even more than normal. So it looks as though the cauterising hasn't worked at all :(. She seemed concerned that my bleeding might in fact be caused by a tumour and said she would get me an appointment for a colopscopy ASAP.
I am now going out of my mind with worry about this. It's 3 weeks for the smear results to come back, and even if I can get an appointment for the colopscopy before that I assume the results won't be back for more weeks? I have exams coming up and am really struggling to deal with the anxiety of everything - as so many of you say, it's the not knowing that's the worst! I just don't know what to think, is it likely that an ectropion would be this persistent? Could it be that which is still causing my bleeding despite the fact it was cauterised only a few weeks ago? I can't help feeling like it probably is something more sinister, and I regret so much not pushing more for the smears. I can't sleep or focus at all, I feel so worried. Can somebody please talk some sense into me? Since all this started I've been telling myself it's probably just hormones/something simple but I genuinely think this might be really serious. Am an absolute mess.