Why a cone biopsy is done @(Model.HeadingTag)>
A cone biopsy may be done to:
- try to find out what is causing an abnormal Pap test result
- diagnose precancerous changes of the cervix and cervical cancer
- treat precancerous conditions of the cervix, carcinoma in situ in the cervix or stage IA1 cervical cancer
How a cone biopsy is done @(Model.HeadingTag)>
A cone biopsy is usually done as an outpatient procedure in the hospital. This means you won’t have to stay overnight. You will have a local anesthetic (freezing) or general anesthetic (you will be unconscious). It depends on how the cone biopsy is done. If you are given a local anesthetic, you may be given pain medicine by mouth or IV (intravenous).
During a cone biopsy, you will be in the same position as you are for a Pap test – lying on your back with your feet up in stirrups. The doctor will place a speculum (the same instrument used during a Pap test) into the vagina to keep it open. The doctor then uses a colposcope (a lighted magnifying instrument) to look at the vagina and cervix and to guide the tools used to do the cone biopsy.
There are 3 ways to do a cone biopsy:
- Loop electrosurgical excision procedure (LEEP) uses a thin wire loop heated by electricity to remove the cervical tissue.
- Cold-knife excision uses a surgical knife (scalpel) to remove the cervical tissue.
- Laser surgery uses a laser (an intense, narrow beam of light) to remove the cervical tissue. Laser surgery is also called laser excision.
The cervical tissue that is removed gets sent to a lab to be looked at under a microscope.
If you have a general anesthetic, you will be taken to the recovery room right after surgery and will stay there until you are ready to go home.
After a cone biopsy, most women are able to return to most of their normal activities within a week. You will be told to avoid sexual intercourse, douching and using tampons for 3 to 4 weeks.
Every 4 to 6 months, you will have a Pap test. After your Pap test results have been normal for a few times, you and your doctor will decide how often you should have the test.
Side effects @(Model.HeadingTag)>
Side effects can occur with any type of treatment, but not everyone has them or experiences them in the same way.
Common side effects may include:
- mild menstrual-like cramps
- some bleeding from the vagina during the first week
- spotting (small amounts of blood) or dark brown discharge from the vagina during the next 3 weeks
Less common but more serious side effects include:
- heavy bleeding from the vagina
- pain that doesn’t go away with pain medicine
- signs of infection such as increasing pain, fever and discharge from the vagina that is yellowish and smells bad
Long-term side effects @(Model.HeadingTag)>
Long-term side effects are different depending on the type of cone biopsy you had.
- LEEP seems to have fewer long-term side effects than the other types of cone biopsy. Women who become pregnant after LEEP may deliver their babies a little early.
- Cold-knife excision has been linked to second-trimester miscarriages and premature delivery.
- Laser surgery has been linked to scarring of the cervix, which may make menstrual periods painful. Women who become pregnant after laser surgery may deliver their babies a little early.
If you become pregnant, tell your doctor that you have had a cone biopsy. Your doctor will talk to you about the best way to manage your pregnancy.
What the results mean @(Model.HeadingTag)>
A pathologist will look at the tissue removed during a cone biopsy under a microscope. The pathologist’s report will tell your doctor if the cells of the cervix are normal, precancerous or cancerous.
What happens if the results are abnormal @(Model.HeadingTag)>
Your doctor may recommend more tests, procedures, follow-up care or treatment.
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