Complications & Safety

While a colposcopy is an entirely safe, commonly performed procedure, there are some risks involved, such as:

Heavy vaginal bleeding

Foul-smelling vaginal discharge

Recurrent stomach pain



A colposcopy is an internal examination of the cervix using a speculum and microscope. During a colposcopy, cervical cells may be extracted for biopsy. This exam is advised when abnormal changes are affecting the cervical cells due to the presence of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV).

A colposcopy is advised when the results of a Pap smear indicate abnormal changes affecting the cervical cells. In addition, a colposcopy is recommended when an ob-gyn cannot get a concise result from the Pap smear. Besides determining the reason for changes to the cervical cells, Dr Bryant performs a colposcopy to find the cause of atypical vaginal bleeding, such as bleeding after sex.


You will be asked to remove all clothing below the waist behind a protective screen and wear a sheet to conceal your body. Dr Bryant will request that you lie down on padded support with your legs outstretched.

Once you are comfortable, Dr Bryant uses a speculum to help open the vagina. Afterwards, a microscope with an attached light (colposcope) is used to view the cervix. However, the colposcope does not enter the vagina. Although the procedure may sometimes be uncomfortable, you will not feel any pain. Liquids may be administered to reveal unusual cervical cells. Usually, a tingling sensation is expected when the fluids are applied. Next, a tiny (pinhead) tissue sample is removed for further analysis, a medical procedure known as a biopsy. When removing tissue, you can anticipate a mild pinching sensation.

What to Expect After the Procedure

You can return home as soon as Dr Bryant completes the procedure. Furthermore, you can anticipate mild pain for several days. Dr Bryant may prescribe painkillers to help ease the discomfort. Vaginal discharge and bleeding should dissipate within a few days.


Colposcopy and Lletz Clinic


When will I be scheduled for a colposcopy?

You will receive a letter indicating the abnormal results of cervical screening. Your gynaecologist will discuss the results of the test with you.

How do you prepare for a colposcopy?

At least 24 hours before a colposcopy, you cannot engage in penetrative sex. You cannot place anything inside the vagina, such as medicines, a tampon or vaginal cream.

Are there any side effects of a colposcopy?

You can expect slight bleeding (spotting) after a colposcopy. It helps to bring along a sanitary pad with you to the appointment in the event of light bleeding.

How long does a colposcopy take?

15-20 minutes.

We are a referral practice that specialises in female pelvic surgery

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