Colposcopy Specialist

Capital Women's Care

Obstetrics & Gynecology located in Montgomery, Bethesda, MD

When you’ve been told you have a human papillomavirus (HPV) infection or had a questionable Pap smear, you may need a colposcopy. At Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda, the team of highly trained professionals can perform your colposcopy and treat your condition. With the help of Dr. Lewis Townsend, Dr. John Gschwend, or Dr. Deena Kleinerman, you can have this procedure and get the best gynecological care possible. If you live in or around Bethesda, Maryland and need a colposcopy, look no further than the team at Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda. Call our office to schedule your appointment.

Colposcopy Q & A

What is a colposcopy?

A colposcopy is a procedure that allows your gynecologist to get a thorough view of your cervix and vagina through a magnifying device called a colposcope. The colposcope not only provides an enlarged image for your doctor to look at it, but it also shines a light into the vagina so your doctor can see clearly.

If any abnormal signs are present, your doctor takes a biopsy, or a sample of tissue, to look at under a microscope. In general, the whole colposcopy procedure is easy and can be done right in the office.


Who needs a  colposcopy?

The team at Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda may recommend you have a colposcopy if you had a pelvic exam or Pap smear that showed abnormalities. A colposcopy allows your doctor to have a clearer image of your vagina and cervix than is possible through a regular pelvic exam and to determine if there are suspicious cellular growths.

The colposcopy helps in the identification of:

  • Genital warts
  • Polyps, or non-cancerous growths
  • Cervicitis, or inflammation of the cervix
  • Precancerous cells on the cervix, vagina, or vulva
  • A possible cause for unexplained pain or bleeding


How do you prepare for a colposcopy?

When you see a gynecologist at Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda, the team asks that you:

  • Abstain from vaginal intercourse for two days before your procedure
  • Not use tampons or vaginal medications for two days before your colposcopy
  • Avoid scheduling the procedure during your period
  • Not take over-the-counter pain relievers before your appointment


What happens during a colposcopy?

Your doctor asks you to lie on your back and place your feet in stirrups, much like you do during a pelvic exam. A speculum opens your vaginal labia, allowing the doctor to place the colposcope just outside your vaginal opening.

The doctor may rinse your cervix and vagina with a mild solution to make any abnormal cellular growth easier to see.  If no unusual or concerning areas are present, the procedure is complete.

If your doctor does see anything abnormal, a small sample of tissue, called a biopsy, is taken for review under a microscope. The biopsy may result in a few days of spotting and slight discomfort.

After the biopsy, your doctor may ask you to refrain from:

  • Sex
  • Tampon use
  • Douching

When you’ve been told you need a colposcopy, call or go online to schedule your appointment at Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda.