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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:00 pm 
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Its not that bad, esp if you can relax! And they basically check for any abnormal cells, which would include cell changes due to an HPV infection. So although they aren't checking specifically for HPV, if you had cell changes as a result they would find them. But as noted in the thread earlier the infection can be dormant in your body for a while...

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:04 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
A speculum might have just been to check your cervix. If some one inserted a swab of some kind and swabbed your cervix and then cultured those cells, you've had a pap.

Good luck with your ladybits!


Swabs are not always paps. There are many different instruments used for paps - some look like a tiny little broom, some like a funky asymmetrical popsicle stick or a tiny bottle brush. Swabs of the conventional sense are usually used for chlamydia/gonorrhea testing and wet preps for yeast/bacterial vaginosis/trichomonas. The only way to know for sure if you had a pap is to ask your doctor. Paps are likely to cause a little bleeding and cramping, which is less likely with other tests.

The recommendations for paps have changed, and some professional organizations do not recommend testing until age 21 regardless of sexual activity, and then every 3 years given normal results. You should still have an annual "well woman" exam, which may or may not involve a pelvic exam depending on your needs and preferences.


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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:14 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
Sending many good thoughts to you.

I thought this was a useful summary of test results - particularly because it points out that the diagnosis you received generally means that the cell damage hasn't escalated to cervical cancer but most likely is just going to involve cryo or a LEEP procedure to remove any problematic cells. The cryo I had wasn't the most fun in the world but it wasn't very painful and I haven't had any issues in the 22 years since.

I hope things go well for you and that you have a quick and complete recovery <3

Thanks for that link, T'lish. I'd found that page through Dr. Google, but hadn't read it thoroughly. Time for a reread. I found another article (which I can't find now, of course) that says women with my diagnosis only have a 2% chance of having cervical cancer now, and only 20% develop it eventually if it's treated in a timely manner.

Thanks for the well-wishes too! I keep trying to think positively, but my medical history (papillary carcinoma) kind of precludes that.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 10:03 am 
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I had an abnormal pap last month, they checked for HPV and nothing came of it. They said to go get checked in a year. I had an abnormal one once before and it was due to blood for a UTI in my system...I wish I could go to a better PP - the one I go to is often so rushed, my questions are not being answered...The last pap/exam I had the doctor with me 6 minutes...It was like a pit stop or something.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 11:16 am 
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Thank you for the reminder. I've never had an abnormal pap but it's been about four years since I had one (I know, I know), and even though I have the world's shittiest health insurance it does cover an annual pap. So thank you for lighting a fire under my asparagus.


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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:05 am 
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kara kara wrote:
So, I'm the worst/best procrastinator ever. I finally had a colposcopy today after having a bad pap nearly a year ago. I had another abnormal pap with my regular doctor last month. When she called with the results, the phone woke me up, so I didn't really register a lot of the things she said. I remember hearing pre-cancerous cells and HPV, but couldn't remember the context. A few days later, I got the results in the mail: "high grade squamous intraepithelial lesion - severe dysplasia/carcinoma in-situ". Great.

I forgot to take any ibuprofen before my appointment, like I was instructed, but the biopsy wasn't too bad. My doctor was really good at explaining everything as we went, and I had a good understanding because of reading this thread. I'm currently Googling the test results, which I put off as long as possible to not worry myself too much, and now I've landed on the Wikipedia article on cervical cancer. I know I shouldn't worry about it until I get more definitive results, but it's pretty impossible to avoid at this stage.


Hey hey Kara kara...

How are you? Well I've been through the same stuff recently... So: ###FREE EMPATHY###
It's a long story but at the end I got surgery to remove the cells; everything went fine; now I understand that for the doctors this is total routine ... yet for me it was hard to handle with all those emotions. It's not just the fear coming from what one can read on the web (and it IS scary even for rational people), it's a cocktail of complex feelings, hard to describe, like anger, loneliness when the few you dare to tell don't seem to understand the feelings you don't understand yourself, vague guiltiness, fear, and shame from this very fear (because the doc tells you there is nothing to fear! What coward am I! I shouldn't complain for it's NOT cancer and blablabla)
It this is any confort I confirm that you are definitely not getting cancer, even without any treatment the risk of neoplasia to turn into cervical cancer is very low, and if you get rid of it and keep seeing your doc on a regular basis there is basically no risk.
Take care of you, have hugs -and an icecream: <B

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:18 pm 
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Thanks for asking! I'm doing okay...well, as good as can be expected, really. It's hard to even focus on this whole thing, since there are so many other areas of my life that are completely wacked right now.

I actually came in here to post that my doctor just called with the results of the two samples from my colposcopy. One was moderate dysplasia, and the other was severe, but she sounded fairly positive on the phone. I scheduled a LEEP for September 11th to remove the more severe area. Hopefully, this'll clear everything up, at least for the time being.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 3:59 pm 
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kara kara wrote:
Thanks for asking! I'm doing okay...well, as good as can be expected, really. It's hard to even focus on this whole thing, since there are so many other areas of my life that are completely wacked right now.

I actually came in here to post that my doctor just called with the results of the two samples from my colposcopy. One was moderate dysplasia, and the other was severe, but she sounded fairly positive on the phone. I scheduled a LEEP for September 11th to remove the more severe area. Hopefully, this'll clear everything up, at least for the time being.


it will be 100%fine (and good news: it doesn't hurt!!! AT ALL!!!!!!)
(AND if you are lucky the hpv will get so weak that your immune system will just kick its asparagus! )

Now, People: thanks to this thread I finally grabbed my phone today and got an appontment on 1st october :)

fork hpv!

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:39 am 
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I had my LEEP today. I've been pretty busy with school and work lately, so the procedure was stuffed way, way back in my mind. I was a little nervous going into it. I had done some last minute research to familiarize myself with what exactly was happening. The internet had worked me up so much that I was expecting it to be longer, scarier and more painful than it was. By the time I got to my doctor's office, my nerves were definitely present.

My doctor explained the procedure, and then we moved into the exam room. I'd read all these horror stories from other women, so I was expecting a fair amount of pain. Not so much. My general pain tolerance is pretty high, so the worst part was the lidocaine shot, which always burns like crazy. I felt a little pressure or something when she did the actual LEEP, but like I told my doctor, nothing really compares to the horrible experience I had when I had my lymph nodes biopsied. Now, THAT was pain.

I now know what my cervix looks like, both before and after the biopsy. I've always had a fascination with medicine and how the human body works, so when my doctor asked if I wanted to see my cervix, I was totally up for it. It's like a perfectly pink donut, albeit I could definitely see where the abnormal cells were after she swabbed it with the vinegar solution. The actual procedure took only a minute, or so it seemed. They took out a sample about half of an inch in diameter, and afterwards, the doctor asked if I wanted to see what it looked like now. I'm not terribly squeamish, so I said yes. I couldn't see much, since the area was covered with Monsel's solution, but it was disgustingly awesome. I'm not even sure how to describe what it looked like, but seeing the specimen afterward put everything into perspective. The human body is pretty wild.

I felt totally fine after the procedure, and even did some grocery shopping on the way home. It did wear me out a little, so I took a nap a little later in the day. Honestly, the colposcopy was worse. There was way more pain and cramping with the colpo compared to the LEEP. My doctor said she'd call with results in about a week, and I'll have to see her again for a pap in 3 months, then every 6 months for about 2 years. This is due to the fact that the likelihood of it developing into cancer is greatest within two years. She also said that I'll probably need a yearly pap for the next 20 years or so, and that I'll never be one of those women who can go 3 years between paps.

All in all, it was a way better experience than I expected. Aside from the lidocaine burn and my legs trembling from keeping them open while they fiddled around with everything before the procedure, it was pretty painless, both physically and metaphorically.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 9:43 am 
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kara kara, thank you for the informative and optimistic update. You have given this thread another good voice and maybe hope to somebody else out there reading it with this problem. I hope you are feeling well and that you will be all better soon!

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:09 am 
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graffiti wrote:
It's pretty hard to avoid HPV since you can even get it with a condom on. Additionally, since men can't really be tested, people may think they are STD free and they are not. I hope you don't beat yourself up for not being the "model" of safe sex. No one really is.

I missed the mark on shots. Came out right as I was turning 25 and it was expensive and not covered by insurance.

I had the LEEP, but didn't have a bad experience with it. Actually, no one seemed alarmed at all that I was getting it. No one even mentioned possible cancer.

I'm not intenting to talk about myself here, and I really sympathize with your ordeal. I suppose I just want to point out that not all abnormal paps are bad signs or mean you are going to get cancer.

I just wanted to requote this because it is so informative, nice and amazing and encouraging! Thank you again, graffiti.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:02 pm 
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Update! Of sorts.

I expected a little bit of bleeding post-LEEP, but I think I had one instance of spotting in four days, and it was only a couple of drops. Some of the Monsel's has seeped out, but I've been wearing a pantyliner, so all is well.

The one thing I'm not looking forward to is the start of my period. From what I've read online, doctors usually like to schedule it a few days after the end of your period so the cervix has time to heal before the floodgates open. Sure wish someone had told me before I scheduled mine. I had my LEEP done about a week before I'm supposed to start, and my PMS is in full force, so it's due in a few days now. I was told to not put anything in my vagina for 2 weeks, including tampons. I'm not looking forward to using pads for the first time in about 15 years. I'm having flashbacks to walking up to the pencil sharpener in 6th grade, thinking everyone could see and smell my pad. Reality is telling me this won't happen, but my 12 year-old self is a little worried.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:13 pm 
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I was on the last day of my period when I had LEEP, and I bled for about 3 1/2 weeks ... when my next period started. So I was bleeding for about 5-6 weeks straight. And because I'd begun to supplement with iron, I started bleeding more heavily too. So heavier bleeding, and I couldn't use my Mooncup. It suuuucked. I think I managed to bleed on 3 skirts in that time (one of which was khaki linen - that went in the bin).

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:39 am 
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I just want to reiterate how important it is to follow up on abnormal paps (preaching to the choir really). When I was in my early 20s and had HMO insurance I had numerous abnormal paps. The doctors told me over and over that it was probably nothing and to get rechecked in a year. I was young and dumb and believed them.

Fast forward a couple years and I am without insurance so I go to a local woman's clinic to get my pap, it comes back abnormal and they told me I needed to come in to get a colp. I ignored them because I was conditioned to believe it was no big deal. Bless these ladies hearts though because they hounded me for a couple months to come back in so I finally did. They did the colp and low and behold found severe displaysia (caused by HPV). I had a LEEP, and when they biopsied that they found cancer cells so I had ANOTHER LEEP to remove more of my cervix. Hearing the words cancer though was so so scary. Luckily it was very early stages and I didn't have to do anything other than the last LEEP and get paps every 6 months for the next 5 years. I have remained clear to this day and the HPV is even gone, but damn those forking lazy HMOs for not taking my abnormal paps seriously!

So ladies PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, demand further testing if you get an abnormal pap and some douchebag dr tells you it's not a big deal!!

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 3:10 am 
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LEEP one year ago (stupid anniversaries!)

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 2:31 pm 
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I wanted to update that I got a new gyno and she did a pap that came back normal and a test for hpv that came back negative. She suspects that my original pap that was so severely abnormal got mixed up in the lab or something. That is not comforting. I went into the debt $3,000 for those follow up procedures. The moral of my story is that it's okay to redo a pap. It might even save you a few thousand dollars.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 1:47 pm 
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Fee, glad you're okay! That does suck though - so much money!

Just had one, all normal!

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 1:56 pm 
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I really need the have one. It's been seven years. I don't even have a regular GYN anymore since mine left the place that takes my HMO. I should check and make sure I don't need a referral and find a new one.

I had an abnormal pap a way back but recheck and HPV came back okay and subsequent ones came back negative.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 9:54 pm 
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Fee - your post also makes me worry about the person with the abnormal results who got your normal result given to her instead if there was a mix up. I'd rather be in your shoes than hers.
(I got an abnormal and a normal in the past. we all want to believe the normal of course, but in my mind I couldn't believe either one so I went for best of three.)


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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 1:35 pm 
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what the hell kind of shiitake is this?

http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ByAudie ... 118530.htm

Quote:
You are more likely to get HPV if you have:
• sex at an early age,
• many sex partners, or
• a sex partner who has had many partners.


NONE OF THE ABOVE. 19, not a lot, even less.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:18 pm 
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I'm about the same, and I keep having to go back to get shiitake removed. I'm hoping my most recent one (Wednesday) will come back clear, but I'm not putting money on it.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad Pap - please get a pelvic exam yearly
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 5:13 pm 
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Seeing this thread bumped reminded me I need to start going to the gyno (I'm turning 21 next month), so I made an appointment for Tuesday. FREAKING OUT A LITTLE


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