One of the dangers of cervical carcinoma is that women usually don’t know that they have it until it has spread to other body parts as well.
Usually the patients don’t experience any symptoms that make them visit a doctor and so it is needed to have a Pap smear to detect the condition.
Pap smear for the carcinoma of the cervix
This procedure is vital when diagnosing the condition. This is the way through which the majority of women find out that they have a problem. The good news is that it can show abnormalities long before cancer has time to develop.
Every woman should have a test of this kind for the carcinoma of the cervix regularly, unless their health care provider says that they don’t need the tests anymore.
In case you are post-menopausal or you had a hysterectomy, you don’t need one anymore.
In case the Pap smear finds any signs of cervical carcinoma or future cancer, then most probably you are going to be scheduled for a colposcopy exam.
You will have this in the office of your doctor. This way he or she will be able to take a closer look at your cervix with the help of the colposcope.
To find the carcinoma of the cervix, this tool is used that magnifies the cervix. During the examination the tool can be found outside the vagina. The images that are created by the tool can be projected on a computer screen or TV. It’s not a must to watch, but you might understand the situation better.
Endocervical curettage and cervical biopsy
While the doctor is performing the colposcopy to find the cervical carcinoma, he or she may perform a cervical biopsy, according to the findings of the previous tests. During this there will be a small piece of tissue removed for later examination under the microscope.
It takes only one second to get the sample for the test of the carcinoma of the cervix and the discomfort that you feel lasts for a short period of time. According to the results of the colposcopy, the biopsy could be performed in different parts of the cervix.
Besides the biopsy done for finding the cervical carcinoma, you could also have endocervical curettage. During this procedure the specialist uses a brush to collect samples from the endocervical canal that can be found between the cervix and the uterus. The procedure for carcinoma of the cervix can be relatively painful, but the pain disappears when the procedure is done.
In the majority of the cases you will get the results of the procedure in about two weeks. It is possible that you will have another meeting with your doctor to discuss the results, or he or she could communicate them through the phone.
LEEP and cone biopsy
In order to diagnose cervical carcinoma there might be need for a larger biopsy. If this is the case you are going to have a cone biopsy procedure.