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Old 07-25-2008, 05:38 AM   #1
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what to expect - fractional sampling

I recently had my first abnormal pap - atypical endocervical glandular cells - the report recommends "fractional sampling of endocervix and endometrium to rule out possible pathology". Yes, I'm worried and nervous as I've felt like something just wasn't right for some time now.

The appointment is scheduled for August 7. A few days later we're supposed to go on a rough camping canoe trip. Will I be bleeding? Rough camping and bleeding/cramping don't mix well. If I wait until after the trip it will be period time and then it will be early September before I get in. My doctor doesn't want me to wait that long. The canoe trip can't be postponed as the kids go back to school (and this is the last chance summer, next year one will be going to college). Sigh. Maybe we'll have to change to a canoe day trip type vacation? Or maybe not - depending on what this fractional sampling does. What does it do?

 
Old 07-25-2008, 09:57 AM   #2
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Hi CME, I was originally diagnosed with "atypical glandular epithelial lesions." That was diagnosed from an ECC that my doctor did when she did the colposcopy. After that diagnosis my doctor scheduled me for a cold knife cone biopsy. (and then there's the rest of the very long story, but doesn't need to be told right now).

How did your doctor diagnose the atypical glandular cells? What procedure will you have on Aug 7?

I look forward to you writing back.

 
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Old 07-25-2008, 10:27 AM   #3
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Any symptoms we need to pay attention to?

 
Old 07-25-2008, 12:10 PM   #4
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Hi Nreyes!

I didn't have any symptoms. Heck, I've never had a bad pap, and I go every year (since I was 19 and I just turned 45). :shrugs shoulders:

Symptoms for cervical cancer are pain and/or bleeding with or after intercourse, break though bleeding between periods.

If you are over 30, ask your doctor to do the HPV/dna test when you go for your pap. If you end up high risk HPV and you are ever sent for a colposcopy, ask them to do an ECC. I say this only because those are the things my doctors did and it helped them diagnose my cancer very early. My ONLY course of treatment was the hysterectomy (uterus and cervix only). I was diagnosed with stage Ia1. I do not need chemo or radiation. I will now see my gyn/onc every 3 months for a year or two, then ever 4 months for a year or two, then every year for the next 5 years.

I am so thankful my general doc started offering HPV for women over 30 and I'm thankful my gyn did the ECC when she didn't see anything wrong with my colposcopy (she didn't need to take any biopsies).

Ask whatever questions you think of. There are some amazingly wonderful women who post here and they'll do their best to help and support you!

 
Old 07-25-2008, 12:18 PM   #5
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Hello again

Pain where inside the vagina? Inbetween bleeding is the bleeding like dark brown oldish blood? Please respond.

 
Old 07-25-2008, 12:45 PM   #6
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

I think, and I don't know.

I would think the pain would be at the cervix, but I'm not positive. I'm not sure about the spotting/bleeding. It could be old blood or new/fresh blood. I forgot to add that any time a woman is post menopausal and she bleeds she needs to get to a doctor ASAP!

Does that help?

 
Old 08-25-2008, 10:21 AM   #7
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

I haven't been back to check my post as we went away for a few weeks. I'm back now and scheduled for a colposcopy and endometrial biopsy this Thursday. Very scared. I've heard the biopsy hurts terribly and all they have you take for the pain is ibuprofen? And I all of a sudden realized I may be headed for a hysterectomy? Luckily I managed to put this all out of my head while on vacation, but now, OMG.

The pap was my normal yearly test. They've always been normal and I have no bleeding or pain symptoms. I do have some yucky discharge - mucusy stuff that is not yeast or bacteria and has no blood (have had it for about a year). Maybe related, maybe not. The pap showed HPV negative. I'm 45.

 
Old 08-25-2008, 11:53 AM   #8
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Don't worry too much about the biopsy. I had that done and all though it hurt more than my doc said, the pain after was really just discomfort. You may spot a little afterwards and be sure to take the ibuprofin to help. Everyone reacts differently to these types of things, but hang in there!!

Pam

 
Old 08-25-2008, 05:13 PM   #9
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

CME, I'm glad you enjoyed yourself on vacation!

When you have your colposcopy, I suggest you also ask for an ECC (endocervical curettage). It will sample the cells that are in the cervical canal that can't be seen by the pap or colpo.

When is your appointment?

 
Old 08-25-2008, 06:23 PM   #10
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Hi Pickle Eyes,

I think he's doing that too. He talked about both the canal and the uterus needing samples. My appointment is Thursday.

 
Old 08-25-2008, 06:30 PM   #11
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Well good luck with it, CME.

I think I saw that you are worried about the pain. My doctor didn't biopsy the exocervix when she did the colposcopy and ECC. The colpo was like a pap. I didn't detect any difference except she used the scope to look inside. The ECC hurt. I can't lie. But, the pain was over in a minute or two, MAX. Going through that pain was much better (since it detected my atypical cells when no other test/screening did) than not going through it and having the cancer still growing inside of me. The pain was kind of like the worst of my period cramps, only sudden.

I didn't spot after the ECC/colpo.

I hope you do well!

 
Old 08-27-2008, 01:04 PM   #12
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Thanks. There's something I really don't understand - if this is something that hurts most people, why is the pain not managed better? My dentist has Novocaine and gas and yes I get both when I get a filling. Going to the gyn, undressing, putting my feet up in stirrups is already worse than a cushy dentist chair and opening my mouth. Then the speculum and worse...

I called my doctor's office, talked with the nurse and told her my concern for the pain. All she said was to take 600-800 mg of Motrin beforehand. I explained that I had a low tolerance for pain but it didn't matter. If my appointment wasn't tomorrow and if I wasn't so worried to find out what this is I'd find another doctor to see who would have more concern for pain. Maybe if vaginas came with teeth we see better pain management?

 
Old 08-27-2008, 05:35 PM   #13
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

The doctor *can* numb the cervix but the pain from the injection hurts as bad or worse than the ECC itself. That's what I was told. I took 600-800mg of iburprofen before my appointment too. The cramp only lasted a minute or so. Really. It felt like a period cramp, only with sudden onset. Then it disappeared.

Personally, that pain is worth knowing what is going on in the canal. I consider my ECC as being a life-saving test.

 
Old 08-28-2008, 12:33 PM   #14
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Re: what to expect - fractional sampling

Ok, I had it, and I'm pleased to say it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. In addition to the ibuprofen I also took a Zanax (but I was still a nervous wreak). I'm kinda crampy now but it's not as bad as a bad period. Beforehand he said he didn't think he'd see anything on my cervix to biopsy but once he was "in there" he did end up finding a few spots to check (I saw them too on the tv) and then did the canal and uterus. Results should be in early next week. Crossing fingers.

 
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