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After colposcopy

A colposcopy appointment usually takes between 15 and 30 minutes. Straight after your examination, you should have some time to ask the colposcopist any questions. You may want to use this time to make sure you feel comfortable – don’t feel rushed to leave.

Read more about what happens at colposcopy > 

Leaving hospital

You can leave the hospital as soon as you feel ready. 

You can go to work or do any other activities as usual, although you may prefer to rest.

Effects after colposcopy

If you had a biopsy, you may have:

  • light bleeding (spotting) 
  • brownish discharge. 

This can be worrying, but try to remember that these effects are common and often stop after 3 to 5 days. 

If you have light bleeding or discharge, wait until it stops before you:

  • have sex
  • swim 
  • use tampons.  

If the bleeding continues for longer than a week or gets heavier, contact your colposcopist or hospital. You should also contact them if you are worried about anything else.

If  you had treatment, you may have different effects. These are common, but can be worrying if you aren’t sure what to expect, so learning more about them can help. 

Read about effects after LLETZ or other treatment for cell changes > 

More information about what happens after colposcopy

Whether you are waiting for biopsy results or having effects, the time after colposcopy can be worrying. Remember that we are here to support you, and that you can also get support from your colposcopist, GP, and family and friends. 

Get support > 


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Date last updated: 
24 May 2019
Date due for review: 
23 May 2022

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