HPV+ no abnormal cells - colposcopy apt

Hi all!

I’ve just had my 3rd HPV positive smear test with no abnormal cell change. Under new guidance I’m now required to go to a colposcopy apt. At the hospital.
My problem is I’m petrified of going to a smear so this for me is next level anxiety! I get so worked up and even reading about what happens makes me completely shut down.

I may be trying to come up with an excuse or find some validation but what is the point? The smear hasn’t picked up any cell change for the last 3 years, they are now inviting me in for process rather than risk.
I’m currently trying to conceive my first baby … I honestly don’t know what to do!

Hi @EmmaAK

I appreciate this is a hard process for you having these procedures done, but these protocols are in place for very good reasons… reading about what happens at the colposcopy honestly sounds much worse than it is, i actually found my colposcopies to be more comfortable than my smears ive had 4 smears and 2 colposcopies

Im not saying this to scare you, but its still very important to attend your colposcopy despite no cell changes being picked up (which is very promising) however as great as our smears are they arnt always 100% rarely cells can be missed and smears arnt a diagnostic tool they are just used as indicators… smears arnt always 100% accurate and cell changes can happen where the smear cant reach, as unlikely as it is that they have missed something and they probably havnt, thats why its been made protocol that someone is sent for further investigations after 3 positives in a row, it may not be a cause for concern as there isnt anything indicating there has been a change to cells and they are just covering their owns backs, but some in some cases they didnt know about their abnormalities until the colposcopy appointment so its still very important for you to attend as there is still a risk until the colposcopy rules it out

If you let them know ahead of time that you find these procedures daunting and arnt coping well with the thought of them, they will try to make this as easy and comfortable for you as possible if you want they can prescribe something to calm you down or your GP may be able help with something

It may not be for concerning reasons that your having one and at the end of the day the decision is yours and yours alone, but attending these appointments are just as important as attending our smears on time xx

Thank you Tinkerbelle.

My nurse has also said similar to me.
I’m just so scared going, it takes me a long time to gather myself to have a smear test and even then I end up nearly fainting on the table. It’s not that it’s painful or I’m embarrassed it’s just the process.
And reading about colposcopy’s it only ever talks about if they have found cell change, or if your cervix didn’t look healthy or you’ve had an unusual symptom. I haven’t had any of it.

If I don’t go, I’ll be called up in a year again for another smear, I don’t mind that. I feel the only benefit is if I go and they don’t find anything I can go back to having a smear every 3-5 years.

When I asked my nurse what the chances were of them find anything she said very unlikely.

X

That is what is most likely going to happen, theyll not find anything and youll be on normal recalls again which would be a great… but that is only the outcome when the smears have been accurate/havnt missed anything

The main benefit and the most important reason of attending is if you didnt go and there was a high grade change that was missed by the smear that needed attention and could have been removed in a few weeks, waiting a year for a smear then x amount of time until another colposcopy, it may not be CIN that they find… is that something you want to risk? X

Cell changes do most often take years to progress, but in 10-11% of cases they dont always behave the way they should… people here have had it where no cells were picked up over the 3 years but the colposcopy has surprisingly found a high grade change, in my case my cells had went from borderline too CIN3 in the space of 13-14 months with others having a clear smear then 12 months later they have CIN3, but as unlikely as these things are i dont think we should take any chances with it

Again im not trying to scare you that really isnt my intention and i hope it isnt coming across that way i just want to make sure your have all your ducks in a row before making this decision xx