Is it safe to put off coloscopy?

I'm looking for advice, last week I had my yearly exam as I do every year even though I'm only 27. 2 days ago the dr called me back and told me that my pap was abnormal and that a HPV test came back positive for high risk HPV. Now the problem is that I'm a photojournalist and I'm leaving the country next week for my very first book project. The Dr seemed really admit that I come in before I leave on Tuesday or Wednesday for a Colposcopy and possibly a biopsy and they even rescheduled some other appointments to get me in tomorrow. My Dr is leaving town on Saturday and won't be back until after I leave. I will be in the 3rd world until August shooting for a nonprofit. Well my period started this evening so I called and left a message for my physicians assistant and her nurse called me back and told me that they can't do it if they can't see the cervix. She told me it's not a big deal and to just wait until I come back in 2 or 3 months and come in then. However I don't know that I can live 2 or 3 months with that hanging over my head. Even if the test results were not good I would rather know while I'm working or be free from the concern. My question now is I didn't cancel the anointment since it was just the assistants nurse that called me. I think that tomorrow I will instead take a bath or clean up really well right before I go and since it's only day 2 the bleeding shouldn't be much at all. Is there any reason that they can't simply rinse it off when they apply the solution to the cervix if I show up and there is any blood on it? If that just won't work maybe I can get in with another Dr before I go or something. Can anyone tell me if you guys think it's urgent to get this done before I go or if it's not a big deal and 3 months time won't make a difference anyway as the nurse said. Also are there going to be changes in my cervix because on menstruation that will make the test impossible anyway? Any info anyone can give me would be great! Thanks

Report post

10 replies. Join the discussion

well.. im not sure if they can do it if your on your second day. i went in once towards the end of my period and they told me i had to schedule another appt. just incase ask your doctor as soon as you never know.. maybe theres something else they can do before you leave so that you can ease your mind a little .. good luck!!!

Report post

a lot depends upon what the pap test results were..."abnormal" covers a whole range of results. i would suggest you find out more info...was it ascus or hgsil or lgsil or....? here's the national cancer institute's website page that indicates the possible pap test results:

and, generally, you need to wait for a colposcopy and biopsies until after your period is may feel cleaned up, but blood is still coming through the cervix and can interfere with test results.

can you see one of your doctor's partners next week, after your period, and before you leave town? even then, it will take a few days for them to get biopsy results, so you'll need to have a way to be contacted.

i can understand wanting to 'know' what's what, and hope you can figure out how to do that, even if the treatment needs to wait a couple of months.

Report post

Dear izabellaleah:

I am sorry to hear you are going through all thses especially now that you have a big journey coming up soon. I do not blame you for wanting to have your colposcopy and biopsy done before your departure but, i am not sure if they can do that during your period. I had to reschedule my colposcopy due to having my period once. You may want to get a copy of your pathology results as well .

I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and please stay in touch. Bless you.

Report post

Well I just found out yesterday that I have high risk hpv. And they even did a biopsy, so Im waiting and praying to God that my results comes back okay.
I am in just shock and feeling soo much hurt.
I have only been with 2 people sexually. and my 1st, we were each others 1st. I dont know if I should tell the 2nd guy even though he just completely ignores me now. Maybe he knows already knows??..Who knows all I know is Im soo confused and hurt! :O(
I do ask and thank everyone for there prayers.
Thank you

Report post

Thanks everyone for the responses. I called the clinic and they told me they can't do it when I'm having my period. The Dr who is leaving town in the only dr at that clinic (small town) that can preform the coloscopy and she is leaving tomorrow so there was nothing I could do until July 8th.

I called another local clinic and they set me up with an appointment for Monday evening and my periods are short it should be done by tomorrow so Monday evening is great. They needed a referal so I called me Dr and she faxed one to me to take with me. That sheet also said that I had ASCH pap and high risk HPV. The clinic also said that they can email me my test results since I will be out of the country when they come back. I intend to go back to my regular Dr when I return but I wanted at least this test done before I go so I know something, anything, about what's going on.

I'll update on Monday night or Tuesday about what they say at the coloscopy, who knows maybe I'll get good new while I'm gone instead of bad news.

Thanks everyone!

Report post

Hey, I'm sorry to hear your boat is so similar to mine at the moment. if you want to email me we can talk more about it. Even when I'm gone I'll have access to email most of the time and since we're in the same place that could good for both of us.


Report post

glad to hear that you've been able to line up the colposcopy and biopsies with another doctor. and, that you've arranged for them to email you the test results. that must be a relief for you!

and, your doctors are following standard protocol by having you have a colposcopy after getting the asc-h and hpv positive test results, so that's a good thing!

you may want to take advil prior to the colposcopy to relieve cramping that may be caused by the biopsies.

if you can, let us know how you're doing! you've found a great community here, with lots of warmth and support.

Report post


Report post

Glad to hear you could schedule colposcopy and biopsys with another dr. It will ease your mind just a bit to know that the results will be with you sooner. Some would say know big deal, it could have waited, but i say have everything done ASAP! The sooner you catch things the better for you. Will you have someone that can be with you when you read results? I hope the best for you but just in case, take it from me its not easy when your alone. I run a daycare and my husband was at work and luckily my kids were sleeping when i got my results. Its better to have someone to lean on.
Well, wish you the best of luck. Keep us informed.
Stage 1 B1 CC
rad. Hyst. 3/20/08

Report post

Thanks everyone for the support, my appointment is tomorrow and to be honest I'm feeling good about it.

I'm at a really good place in my life, my kids are old enough to really get to know them as people, my dream career is just beginning to take off, and I have friends that absolutely amazing. Cancer or no cancer I have a great life. I don't want to have more kids so my fertility doesn't worry me and most of my work is on my schedule so I can work around whatever I need to work around. Everyone here has been so supportive and based on the information I've read even if it turns out to be cancer I can cope with that and take it as just one more thing that I need to work with and embrace on my journey.

I won't unfortunately have anyone with me when I get my results at least no one I feel comfortable leaning on in a an emotional crisis but right now I really feel ok and I feel like hearing that it was cancer I'd be ok with it so I think I'll be alright. And when I get home I can either keep keeping an eye on it or I can head straight into a treatment plan and I feel pretty good about it. I'm not silly enough to believe cancer is a pick nick but I also know I have the guts and support system I need to deal with almost anything!

Thanks everyone for being so helpful and supportive. I will of course keep everyone updated. Tomorrow and when I get my results as well.

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Things you can do

Support NCCC

Help the National Cervical Cancer Coalition reach its goals and support people like yourself by making a donation today.

Donate to the National Cervical Cancer Coalition

Discussion topics

Community leaders