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Abnormal Pap Test?

I just got a note from my doctor today saying that i need to be checked because of an abnormal Pap test...

Not that it looks cancerous, but I need to be checked out.
Has anyone else had this occur to them? I'm a bit worried, but plan to call him tomorrow. I did a little reading online and from what I've read, I should not be overly alarmed until I get the tests done. However, his note to me stated that he may need to do a biopsy....

I had an endometrial biopsy before (due to fertility issues) and had horrible cramps.

I'm hoping someone can share with me their experience and how painful it was (or was not).

The other thing is that I tend to be a worry wort... and am very concerned....

Thanks for "listening"....

Wed. Jun 14, 3:12am

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I'm sorry to hear you had an abnormal pap. At this point, just means more investigation needs to be done. About 20 years ago I had cervical dysplasia (I think that's how you spell it) which means the cervical cells were abnormal, or could be termed pre-cancerous. They did a colposcopy (just means they look at the cervix with a microscope of some sort) and took a small bit of tissue for a biopsy. I did have some cramping, but it wasn't too bad. In the end, they suggested a procedure called cryro surgery, which just means they freeze the outer layer of cells on the cervix using (I think) liquid nitrogen. Then these outer layers of cells die off and sluff off over the next week. It didn't really hurt, the biopsy was worse. Then I had to wear sanitary pads for the next week and of course abstain from sex for awhile.

The paps I've had since then have been normal, but I do get what they call a 4-quadrant pap, which means they take a sample from 4 areas of the cervix, so it's more extensive. Some doctors recommend repeated colposcopies and some other tests, and some say it's not necessary it you have normal paps. I'm not a medical person, this is just the information I remember as I experienced it and I understood it.

My situation is that I'm a DES daughter, which means that my mother took a prescribed drug called DES (I can't remember the whole name it stands for) when she was pregnant with me in the 60s. There is a higher than average incidence of cervical cancer in these now adult children, and even the male children can be affected. There are also higher rates of infertility in our group, which I have experienced.

I don't know if any of this is helpful, but I wish you the best. If you have more questions about my experiences you can post them here in this thread, I'll check back.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 5:01 AM

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I've had 3 abnormal paps:
-first time I was checked again and it ws nothing (and they did the biopsy and it hurt like nobody's business)!
-the second time I was re-examined and it was again nothing (and I REALLY started to HATE the stuid biopsies).
-the third time they found I had HPV, and the cells were rapidly getting more severly warped (though still not cancerous). They did cryosurgery on me too, and several hours later I was "defrosting" (it sounds as yucky as it is).
The bottom line, though, just get checked. Most of the time it's nothing, and even if you have HPV (a very common virus up to 80% of women have, even if they don't know yet), it's ok too. The whole process of getting re-checked is scary, but as long as your docs do great follow up, you'll be fine no matter what. Just keep getting regular paps after this, also.
Good luck!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 8:37 AM

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My wife got a note like this- everything was fine of course-- but it made her very very upset at the time. I know how you are feeling right now.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 8:40 AM

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abnormal pap smear results are so darn common. my sister in law, who is a nurse practitioner, said that pap smears are one of the most unreliable tests. (I think they have improved upon them recently). try not to stress until you talk to your dr. and have more tests done. we are here for you - keep us posted!!!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 9:10 AM

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I've had an abnormal pap test before. I went in for a re-test, and honestly, i can't even remember why it was abnormal. As the others are saying, don't panic. It's pretty common.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 10:07 AM

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i had an abnoramal pap recently, but i dont have insurance so i cant afford to have it checked out. ::crossing fingers:: i hope its nothing!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 1:27 PM

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To the 1:27 poster - save money as quickly as you can to be retested. If it is a more serious problem then it is very important (and well worth the money than you will spend on anything else) to get it checked.

To the OP. I had an abnormal pap about two years ago. I tested positive for HPV. I had a few more pap tests and a biopsy. The biopsy was mildly painful, but only for a second. (I would compare it to getting your belly button pierced.) My doctor finally suggested a LEEP procedure which I had late last year. The LEEP procedure was uncomfortable, but not as painful as the biopsy. I had some cramping later in the day and bleeding for a few days following. My paps since have come back fine and I am back to annual exams.

Most importantly try not to worry (I know that's easier to say that to do.), but honestly, it's not worth worrying. Most likely, you're fine, and even if there is some displaysia it is completely treatable. And the treatments are not as scary as they sound. Definitely go back in. It's not worth it to try to ignore it and let the problem get serious. It's really not that bad.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 4:01 PM

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To 1:27 poster who doesn't have insurance

Planned Parenthood and other city/county health clinics provide women's reproductive health services on a sliding scale. Please go to one of these clinics and get it checked out.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 7:32 PM

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Yes, 1:27 poster, now we are worried about you! Some cities have other free or low income clinics. You must find a way to get this checked out! Your life could depend on it. Now I will worry about you until you tell us that you are going to do what it takes and get it checked out!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 8:19 PM

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Another comment on the biopsy if you must have one. It hurt a little, but it was nothing compared to some cramps I've had. Really not that bad.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 8:21 PM

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