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What you should expect after treatment

What you shoud expect immediately after the treatment

If your treatment was carried out with a local anaesthetic, you may notice some period-like cramps as the anaesthetic wears off. If this is the case, try taking 2 x 500mg paracetamol or 2 x 200mg Ibuprofen (if you have no allergies or previous problems with Aspirin) tablets to relieve the pain.

If the CIN has been treated by LLETZ (loop treatment) you will have a blood-stained vaginal discharge for some time. This usually settles in 2 weeks but may last for up to 4-6 weeks. The discharge should not be heavier than a period and should get progressively lighter. If you are worried that this is not the case, you should have been given the contact number of a person you can call at the clinic. Otherwise you should contact your GP.

You should be given an information leaflet from your clinic informing you what to expect after treatment and advising you of telephone numbers to contact if you have any problems.

You are usually to avoid sexual intercourse for 4 weeks after treatment. You should also avoid using tampons during this time. You may be advised to avoid bathing or swimming for between two and four weeks.

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Follow up after treatment

If you have had treatment to the cervix after having had an abnormal smear, it is important to have a HPV check about 6 months later. This is to see that the treatment has been effective. Usually this is done in the community but sometimes this will be done at the colposcopy clinic.

While nine out of ten women will not need a second treatment, it is important for you to know that your risk of another abnormality is greater than for women who have not needed treatment. Making sure your cervical screening test are up to date is crucial. If you smoke there is good evidence that stopping smoking or vaping will reduce the risk as nicotine levels in you cervix can make you more vulnerable to HPV infections.

Will treatment to my cervix alter my periods?

There is no evidence that the flow during your period is increased or that the regularity of your cycle is altered by treatment. Rarely periods may disappear particularly after a cone biopsy (this is the treatment that is usually performed with a general anaesthetic) but this is due to a rare complication called cervical stenosis, where the cervix becomes blocked and cramp like period pains, continue because of blood becoming trapped in the uterus (or womb). This can usually be dealt with by a procedure to open the cervix and release the trapped blood.