I shared my experience with having abnormal smear tests and cervical biopsies on my Instagram stories and in my blog post My Cervical Screening Story: High Abnormalities, LLETZ Treatment And Recovery. My LLETZ treatment was fully successful and now back on regular routine smear tests every 3 years because I am healthy. Hooray!
I wanted to share my top 5 tips for preparing for a colposcopy and cervical biopsy as I've been through a few of them myself and I want to help other ladies who are going through a similar situation. I'm not a medical professional, I just want to offer some advice and reassurance. So if you have been informed you have an abnormal smear test via letter and have been invited to attend a colposcopy screening then here are my suggestions to help and prepare you before you go.
1. Have A Bath
If you are a bath lover like I am then make sure you have a nice bubbly bath a few days before your appointment. This is because when you have a colposcopy the doctor usually decides to take a biopsy of your cervix to take a closer look at the abnormal cells. Your cervix can take up to 4-6 weeks to heal and you aren’t allowed to submerge yourself in water. No baths, hot tubs or swimming. I had a colposcopy a few weeks before Christmas and it was difficult not having a bath as it’s one of my Christmas traditions to have a bath with a lush bath bomb for a treat.
2. Take Painkillers
If you have a cervical biopsy you may experience cramping which is similar to period cramps which can feel uncomfortable. So I suggest to take a form of pain relief with you. You may get offered pain relief at the hospital but if you don't then you have some just incase.
3. Eat Something
Before your appointment eat something light. Keep your blood sugar in check. Take a sugary drink with you too.
4. Treat Yourself
After your appointment, do something nice for yourself. Buy yourself a chocolate bar, watch your favourite TV show, Netflix or facetime a friend.
5. Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust
I'd recommend visiting Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust website as it's a fantastic website full of information about HPV, cervical screenings, colposcopy and so much more. The chat forum really helped me to connect with others about what I was going through. It provided me with comfort knowing that you aren't on your own and how common it is.
I wish you all the best with your colposcopy.