Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New Haven, CT
Re: AGUS/AGC pap results - questions about ECC & endometrial biopsy
Hi Angel --
Welcome, but sorry for the circumstances that bring you here.
Regarding the procedures, I've had a colpo, ECC and endometrial biopsy, and for me, the endo biopsy was the worst, although definitely bearable. I did not have any pain killers for any of these procedures, except a couple of motrin before the endo biopsy (which was performed a few months before the colpo and ECC, which were done at the same time.
My colpo involved a few biopsies, which were for me really just a minor, extremely quick pinch that I wouldn't even say was painful. The colposcope is really just a magnifying instrument so they doc can better see the cells, and see if there's area that he/she feels need to be biopsied, so there is really no pain associated with that as it's just a visual exam. If they take a biopsy, for me that was a quick pinch, and lasted less than a second. They only usually take about a 1mm by 1mm piece of tissue, if that. It's very small.
The ECC takes a small piece of tissue (but larger than the other biposies) from inside the cervical canal. For me, that pinched and was painful (not terribly, but it was noticeable), although by the time I was able to say ow, it was over with. In my case, the ECC sample was 1cm by 1cm by less than 1mm deep.
I had no residual pain from either of those procedures. While the ECC does go into the cervical canal, the doc doesn't really go that far up (usually about 1cm or so). The instrument is very narrow and doesn't go all the way up the canal.
During the endo biopsy, I believe the doc will dilate you if they can't pass the swab through the cervical canal. I didn't have to be dilated. My doc had told me to take 800mg of motrin an hour before I came in for the exam. What bothered me was the swishing around they do with the swab in order to get the sample. THAT sucked, in my opinion. At least the one I had was done with what looked like a fat tipped, long-handled Q-tip. After passing through the cervix (which did not hurt), she kind of swished it around for ten seconds. I was like um, this is not comfortable, and she counted out loud to let me know when it would end. I had some very uncomfortable (not unbearable, but definitely uncomfortable) cramping within about ten minutes, and it lasted probably about an hour or so. By the next day I think I was fine.
Aside from taking the motrin, I don't believe there's anything you can take to make yourself more relaxed, except maybe some Xanax or other anti-anxiety medication, so perhaps you won't tense up in anticipation. Some ladies on here have had horror stories, I agree, but there are also a bunch of us, myself included, that didn't really have a problem with these tests.
With an AGUS pap, you definitely want to make sure that they do an ECC. Assuming this testing finds nothing of concern, they will tell you to come back in six months, maybe three, depending on how cautious your doctor is. Personally, I'd insist on three months, even if I had to pay for the visit myself. Glandular stuff is nothing you want to mess with, and definitely moves faster than the squamous stuff. There are a few of us on this board, myself included, whose cases moved rather quickly. I don't want to scare you with my story, because a large part of what happened to me is because I had a really crappy doc who couldn't do a proper pap, but I went from a clean pap and clean endo biopsy in May, to being diagnosed with invasive adenocarcinoma (glandular) in November. My problem was probably there in May as well and my old doc missed it, but I was diagnosed at 39, and had never had even one bad pap my entire life, and I faithfully went every year. So my point is, keep a close eye on this!!
Unless you have a rather large tumor, a pelvic ultrasound isn't going to show you anything of use regarding your cervical condition.
Good luck with your tests, and keep us posted on how you are doing.