Your gynecologist in Queens, NYC may do a colposcopy procedure for a number of reasons. An HPV positive colposcopy occurs after an abnormal Pap smear to check for a human papillomavirus infection. At the same time, your doctor can perform a colposcopy biopsy to collect a tissue sample for analysis. There are no colposcopy side effects except for occasional discharge after colposcopy procedures and some bleeding after colposcopy biopsy.
A colposcope is a special microscope your Forest Hills, Queens gynecologist uses to examine your internal tissues more closely than the naked eye alone can detect. Your doctor performs a colposcopy when he’s concerned about an abnormal Pap smear test or other abnormalities — such as changes in your vagina, cervix or uterus. A colposcopy may also help your doctor determine if you need to have a test for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
Most abnormal Pap smear results are caused by viral infections — such as the human papillomavirus or HPV. Sometimes, abnormal results are from natural changes due to menopause. On rare occasions, the results, an inflamed cervix or symptoms such as pain or abnormal bleeding point to a more serious condition, including cancer. In these cases, a tissue sample taken at the same time, a colposcopy biopsy, can confirm the suspected condition.
If your gynecologist in Queens, NYC finds genital warts, inflamed tissue, non-cancerous growths or polyps in your uterus or on your cervix, he can diagnose and treat them right then, during or after your colposcopy. HPV is a common virus that’s most often benign or non-cancerous. If your results show HPV, a colposcopy procedure can rule out more serious health conditions associated with it.
Preparation for Your Colposcopy
A colposcopy is usually performed by your gynecologist right in his Forest Hills or Rego Park, Queens office. Before you arrive, take the following preparatory steps:
- Try to schedule your colposcopy when you are not menstruating.
- Take an over-the counter pain reliever recommended by your doctor 30 to 60 minutes before the procedure if you’re worried about mild cramping.
- Do not put anything into your vagina for a full 24 hours before the procedure — including vaginal creams, douches or tampons.
- Do not have sex within 24 hours of your procedure — that includes sex after colposcopy procedures.
- Do not take aspirin or Warfarin before the procedure without your doctor’s knowledge, as these drugs can increase the chances of bleeding after colposcopy biopsy procedures.
- Discuss the possibility that you’re pregnant with your gynecologist. He can probably do the colposcopy without injury to you or your fetus, but he may decide not to do a biopsy.
- Tell your doctor about any medications you are taking or any allergies to medications.
- Discuss any bleeding problems you have had in the past.
- Tell your gynecologist in Queens, NYC if you’ve been recently treated for a vaginal, cervical or pelvic infection.
Colposcopy Procedure Details
A colposcopy procedure usually only takes 10 to 20 minutes. It’s primarily an observation test that allows your gynecologist to visually examine your reproductive organs. He only needs to do a colposcopy biopsy procedure if he finds something unusual. Just because you have a colposcopy, HPV infections or other serious complications aren’t always detected. During the procedure:
- You undress from the waist down, but are draped with a sheet.
- You then lie down on the exam table with your feet in stirrups.
- Your doctor inserts a speculum into your vagina to keep it open and widen it slightly.
- A swab a vinegar solution or iodine may be used on a particular area to allow your gynecologist to better see abnormal tissues. This solution may produce a slight burning or tingling sensation.
- Once the colposcope is maneuvered into position. your Forest Hills, Queens doctor makes his observations.
- Photos or even video may be taken for medical purposes.
Your doctor looks for white areas on your cervix, which signal abnormal changes. Genital sores or warts, or vascular changes may also be on your doctor’s agenda to look for. If anything seems unusual or abnormal, he’ll take a very small tissue sample (a colposcopy biopsy) to send to the lab. Results typically take one to two weeks to return.
Because your doctor can’t see everywhere with a colposcope, he may decide to take a sample of tissue from inside your cervix. To do this, he performs a test called an endocervical curettage. Gently inserting a small, sharp-edged tool called a curette into your vagina, he takes a small sample of tissue. The test usually takes less than a minute. It may cause some mild cramping and should not be done if you are pregnant.
Aftercare and Colposcopy Side Effects
If your doctor didn’t need a biopsy, you should feel fine after your colposcopy. There’s a rare chance of some minimal spotting. Bleeding after colposcopy biopsy procedures, though, is common. It mimics a light period for a day or two.
You may experience some mild cramping for 24 to 48 hours, but you can take over-the-counter pain relievers recommended by your gynecologist. You may also notice some dark discharge after colposcopy procedures, likely due to the solutions used by your doctor. This is normal.
Do not douche, use a tampon or have sex after colposcopy procedures for one week. Do not exercise for one day. Contact your doctor if you have any of the following:
- The discharge begins to have a strong, foul odor.
- Your pain does not improve with over-the-counter medication.
- Bleeding continues for longer than seven days.
- Significant bleeding occurs, which causes you to use more than one sanitary pad per hour.
- You have severe lower abdominal pain.
- You run a fever or have chills after a colposcopy biopsy.
Special Considerations Regarding a Colposcopy Biopsy
If you test HPV positive, colposcopy may be the first step for your gynecologist in Queens, NYC. If your Pap smear and colposcopy show very different results, you may need to repeat each test. The results of your biopsy determine if and what further treatment you need.
Since women with HPV are more susceptible to cervical cancer, they may have a colposcopy without an abnormal Pap smear. Your doctor wants to be more diligent in screening for cancer. As with any test or procedure, open communication with your doctor about your medical history is essential for the most effective results.
As a best in class gynecologist in Queens, Dr. James Gohar provides highly personalized and comprehensive care. His philosophy regarding the doctor/patient relationship is based on trust and has earned him one of the most respected reputations in Queens NY.
For more information about the Colposcopy procedure in Queens NY, treatment options or to schedule a consultation with the (gynecologist) OBGYN doctor, the best rated Colposcopy specialist, Dr. James Gohar, please contact our Queens office.
Gynecologist Dr. James Gohar (OBGYN Doctor)
Forest Hills Medical Services
108-16 63rd Rd
Forest Hills, NY 11375
☎ (718) 897-5331