Colposcopy is a diagnostic procedure to see why your pap smear came back abnormal. If suspicious lesions are identified on Colposcopy, biopsy is performed to confirm pre cancerous or cancerous cells, genital warts or HPV lesion, polyps or other causes of inflammation or irregular cells.
When you get a call informing you that you have an abnormal Pap Smear result, don't panic. It does not mean necessarily that you have Cancer. Pap smears usually pick up abnormal cells years before cancer develops. Some cancers, however, can be very aggressive and develop quickly.
If Colposcopy is negative, no biopsy is performed and the patient is advised to return in 3 months to repeat a pap smear. If biopsy results confirm low grade of dysplasia or pre cancerous condition, the treatment usually consists of Cryosurgery. More advanced lesions may require a LEEP procedure or Cone biopsy.
It is important to follow up after Colposcopy and/or treatment to make sure that subsequent pap smears are normal. Your clinician will advise you how often you should have Pap smear performed based on your condition.