A colposcopy enables the doctors and nurse practitioners at Burlington OBGYN Associates Inc. to view your cervix in detail. At their office in Burlington, Massachusetts, they perform in-office colposcopies to determine the source of abnormal Pap smear results and investigate internal gynecological symptoms. Call Burlington OBGYN Associates Inc. to learn how you could benefit from a colposcopy or schedule a consultation online today.
A colposcopy uses a lighted magnifying device (colposcope) that enables your Burlington OBGYN Associates Inc. gynecologist to look at your cervix in detail. It’s an in-office procedure that takes around 5-10 minutes.
You lie on your back, and your gynecologist uses a speculum to open your vagina. They insert the colposcope and apply a vinegar or iodine solution to your cervix to highlight abnormal tissue. You might sense cold or slight burning sensations, but the procedure shouldn’t be painful.
If they identify any abnormalities, your gynecologist takes small tissue samples (biopsies) from your cervix and/or vagina. You may experience mild discomfort and cramping as they extract the tissue.
Your gynecologist will likely recommend a colposcopy if you have an abnormal Pap smear. This routine cervical cancer screening procedure identifies changes in the cervix using a cell sample. When the lab results come back, they list any cell changes, including minor problems unrelated to cancer as well as cancer itself.
To determine what the cell changes mean, your Burlington OBGYN Associates Inc. provider performs a colposcopy. Lab analysis of a biopsy shows what’s causing the cell changes so you can receive the most effective treatment.
It’s important to be aware that having an abnormal Pap smear doesn’t mean you definitely have cancer. Most often, cervical cell changes aren’t a serious problem. If you do have precancerous cells or early-stage cervical cancer, treatment is far more straightforward and successful.
Other problems that might require a colposcopy include:
Your gynecologist might also use colposcopy to check treatment results.
Providing you feel OK, you can return to work and go about your day as usual after a colposcopy. The biopsy may cause mild pain or cramping, but this typically fades within an hour or two. A cervical biopsy can also cause minor bleeding or a brownish/blackish vaginal discharge resembling coffee grounds, but this should stop within a few days.
When your colposcopy results come back, your gynecologist will discuss them with you. You might need further procedures or treatments to remove or destroy the abnormal cells.
Call Burlington OBGYN Associates Inc. to learn more about colposcopy and its uses, or book an appointment online today.