This page serves to collect all the posts I’ve written regarding my experience of having HPV, Cervical Dysplasia, a few Colposcopies, a LEEP, and then an Endometriosis diagnosis. I have received hundreds of comments and emails from women who have had similar experiences and are looking for resources and camaraderie, thus I keep sharing my own story.
Here is the timeline of my experience/health history
August 2009 First abnormal pap smear. I was living in Lima and went in for my annual while visiting back in the states. Cried for a while, did some research, crossed my fingers that like a large percentage of abnormal paps my next one would show that the dysplasia (abnormal cell growth) had reversed course.
May 2011 Still abnormal. Cried a lot, did a lot of research, scheduled a follow up “second opinion” with another doctor.
August 2011 The second opinion was that it was time I get a biopsy.
September 2011 I had the Colposcopy. A “Colpo” is a biopsy of the tissue to see how extensive the dysplasia is. The results were not good; cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) 3
October 2011 I had the LEEP procedure, you can read about that experience in this post.
February 2012 3 month follow up Pap was “normal”. SO relieved. I was experiencing a nagging pain/discomfort in my pelvic area and upper thigh which my doctor had absolutely no interest in hearing about and no suggestions as to what might be causing it.
2012-2013 Normal paps! I was told in that time that I probably have endometriosis and started dealing with that. There is some findings showing that trauma (LEEP procedures absolutely fall into the trauma category!!) to the cervix can cause endometriosis and while it is super common I never experienced a single symptom until exactly one year after the LEEP.
December 2013 Abnormal. I was crushed. Heart broken. I had finally had enough time since the LEEP and enough normal results to start to not think about it/get stressed out about it regularly.
March 2014 My second colpo. The results weren’t bad, just some mild dysplasia. The doctor called me with the results and said that the follow up protocol was to have another pap in a year and hope that it would just go away on it’s own. I felt pretty good about this, it was a huge relief to think that I wouldn’t have to deal with it for a year.
April 2015 It didn’t go away. Still abnormal. Again, my doctor called me with the results and in a very concerned and sympathetic tone she said that I needed to schedule with a surgeon and they would either want to do another LEEP or the more aggressive surgery.
December 2015 I finally faced the issue and booked a 3rd colposcopy (biopsy) at the recommendation of the surgeon. The colpo was super unpleasant but only revealed a tiny spot of abnormal cells. The biopsy removed all the abnormal cells and I was told to come back for a follow up pap in a year. (Here is the post from then)
November 2016 Normal pap! I was so relieved when the nurse called me with the results that I had like a reverse panic attack, hyperventilating and shaky out of relief!
December 2016 I had an ultrasound because my doc wanted to look at my overies after I “complained” of regular pelvic pain, heavy bleeding, lots of clots, and horrible cramps. The ultrasound results were good, my overies look great and no sign of uterine polyps or fibroids. Her only solution was to go on a low dose birth control to take care of the symptoms but I am not interested in that option so I am looking into alternatives through supplements and diet. The docs other comment was, once again, that I probably have endometriosis which is contributing to these issues.
Posts on Cervical Dysplasia, the LEEP procedure, the Colposcopy (biopsy for cervical dysplasia), & Endometriosis
The post links are in order of when they were written, with the oldest first.
Cervical Dysplasia October 2011
The LEEP Procedure October 2011
No News is the Best News November 2011
LEEP Recovery February 2012
Cervical Scar Tissue February 2012
Cervical Dysplasia Follow Up September 2012
Good News, Bad News June 2013
Abnormal (again) January 2014
Making a Mantra January 2014
Oversharing March 2014
Colposcopy #2 March 2014
Crap. (it’s back) June 2015
Colposcopy #3 December 2015