I can only echo what the other ladies have said!
Every experience is different, and you’ll see that on this forum. However, for me the absolute worst thing about this whole situation was…the worry, anxiety and waiting for results, not the actual procedures.
I’d like to share my experiences in the hope that it will help reassure you. )Warning: very long posting ahead for which I apologise in advance!).
When I got my letter saying I had an abnormal smear result, I went to pieces. For a week after, I was in the grip of total anxiety. Sleepless nights, on the verge of a panic attack, loss of appetite…the lot. Naturally, I googled it and freaked myself out even more! Then I found Jo’s, and calmed down a bit. You’ll see from my first post just how scared I was – and I don’t think there’s a woman on here who will say differently. To make it worse, the letter I received had no grading on it so I was clueless as to whether my abnormality was mild, moderate or severe. In hindsight, I’d have called the clinic to find out, but I wasn’t thinking straight at the time.
Fast forward to my colposcopy (didn’t feel fast forward at the time, my original appointment letter got sent to the wrong address!), and the nursing team who looked after me could have not have been more supportive or understanding. Before it took place, I had a chat with the Sister doing the colp, and she explained my abnormality was mild and what that meant. She was so lovely that I almost forgot to be nervous! The actual colp was totally fine. It felt like a slightly longer smear. Biopsies were taken and I didn’t feel a thing.
Another long wait, and I got a letter saying CIN2 was found and I’d need to go for a LLETZ. I was pretty gutted – I’d sort of kidded myself that as my abnormality was mild, I wouldn’t need treatment! Then I had a stern word with myself: CIN2 meant it wasn’t cancer and could easily be treated. Plus, I’d much rather they removed the bad cells and not wait to see what would happen.
I’d read quite a few horror stories on the forums about the LLETZ, mostly about bad after-effects. Again, everyone is different, but for me, I can honestly say it was all fine. The procedure itself was fast, I hardly felt anything, few cramps after and a strange charcoal discharge for a week…and then nothing. It will have been four weeks tomorrow since I had it done and I think I’ve healed (I say this because I was a bit naughty and had sex at the weekend for the first time since the procedure – sorry for TMI! – and it was totally painless. But don’t follow my example in this – really should have waited for the full four weeks!)
As for the results, well, this weekend I got the letter I’d been hoping for – CIN2 all cleared, go for a smear in six months’ time! I’m so relieved.
Yes, I know that come July, the anxiety will creep back in, but there’s nothing I can do to control it. And after an anxious few months, I’ve determined that I never want to be that way again if I can possibly help it.
Sorry for the rambling tale! I guess I just wanted you to know that the vast majority of experiences turn out like this. You will read some experiences on here that may worry you. However, women posting here have had unfortunate experiences that they want to share and reach out for support on. Those who go on to receive good results don’t usually come back and share here.
And if results turn out to be something more serious (again, extremely unlikely) you’ll see from here just how effective and advanced treatment is. Honestly, before I came on here I thought cervical cancer = at best, no children, and at worst, terminal diagnosis. I’ve learnt this is really not the case and have been so inspired by the stories on here. Plus, take reassurance (I know I do) from being in a screening programme that will pick up abnormalities long before they become cancer.
I hope this helps, please PM me if you’d like to talk some more xxx