Colposcopy, HPV vaccine and Early Pregnancy
Mar 21, 2017 – Having a colposcopy today. Had an abnormal pap smear. I believe the term the doctor used was "pre-cancer" and of course anything with the word cancer in it is well, daunting! She notes I also tested positive for HPV. (Luckily?), I've seen the comedy special Baby Cobra, starring Ali Wong and I know this is a very common occurrence. I was exposed at some point in my life and it may or may not be impacting the cells on my cervix. Great. I have to get three shots of a the Gardisil vaccine over a six month period. Even greater!
I arrive at the doctors office having thoroughly worked myself into a tizzy. My anxiety is a like a little mushroom and I always manage to give it way more water than it should really be exposed to...ever. I reminded the doctor that my period was late and I could be pregnant. I don't really think I could be pregnant, but I just had my mammogram last week and the technician made me sign a waiver stating that I understood the risks of exposing my baby to radiation. Say what, now? The tech said it was standard protocol to have women who are "late" sign the release. Okey, dokey, smokey.
I relay all this to the OBGYN. She was dismissive. We’re either doing the colposcopy today or we’re doing the pregnancy test. She said it was highly unlikely at my age that I would be pregnant. Like 1% chance, to be exact. Ok, let’s do the colposcopy then. <shrug> What do I know? I laid down, wearing a pink gown and put my sock covered feet in the stir ups. This doctor has you keep your socks on during an exam. Think of it as not a socks optional kinda place.
No matter how many times I have a speculum wedged into my vagina, it's not something you ever really get used to...neither apparently is how to lay properly on the table. The doctor tells me to scoot down. You would think I would remember that half of my bum is meant to be hanging off the exam table. After being directed how far to scoot down, I'm finally in the right place. I take a few deep breaths and try to dry out that extra moisture from my anxiety mushroom. It's not really working. I stare at the monitor above me. It has a nice beach scene playing with soothing music. I close my eyes as the speculum squeezes in. She tells me to relax. Really? Let's switch places and see how relaxed you are, doc. The hard plastic goes in and the jaws of speculum spring wide open as my vaginal walls wince. There is some talking and poking going on down there. More deep breaths. It's over soon enough. She tells me I'll get the results back in a few weeks and any light spotting should be expected but if it is heavy or persists beyond 24 hours, I should call the office. Well that wasn't so bad! Why do I always get myself so worked about these things?
I'm a little sore and achey, Nothing a little Tylenol won't fix. I take two and then find my way to a boozy lunch. So glad I took the day off of work!