Cervical polyps are small growths that generally do not cause any discomfort or pain, but they are easily discovered during a pelvic examination or Pap test. Cervical polyps are either Ectocervical or Endocervical. Ectocervical polyps are most frequently diagnosed in postmenopausal women, while Endocervical polyps are more frequently found in premenopausal women.
The majority of cervical polyps are small enough to be removed in the surgeon’s office or are treated as an outpatient procedure in a surgical center. The non-invasive surgery is performed without the need for anesthetic. The surgeon first uses a medical instrument, called a speculum, to widen the opening of the cervix, and then inserts a magnifying instrument, called a colposcopy, for enhanced visibility of the polyp, or polyps. The surgeon then uses forceps to grab the base of the polyp and twist the lesion until it comes off. While it is not a painful experience, there may be a tugging feeling. The surgeon will scrape the area, using a curette, to remove any remaining polyp tissue. The base area of the lesion will then be closed by cauterization with a silver nitrate stick. You may need to remain in the surgeon’s office or outpatient clinic for a short post-operative rest period before being able to leave.
If you experience cramping, your surgeon may recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever or prescribe a mild pain medication. It is normal to experience some bleeding or spotting for a few days, so you will need to wear a sanitary pad. Do not wear a tampon or douche until all bleeding or spotting has stopped. You can bath as normal after the procedure. Your surgeon will tell you when to schedule a follow-up appointment in his office.