How to Prepare for Laser Ablation Cone Treatment
If you have received an abnormal Pap smear result, you may be feeling anxious about your gynecologic health. At Gynecology and Cosmetic Surgery Center of Atlanta, OB/GYN Dr. Gerry Sotomayor and our caring team understand these concerns and are committed to providing women near Peachtree Corners and Atlanta with rapid, effective treatment options to minimize their risk of cervical cancer and relieve their worries as quickly as possible. In many cases, laser ablation cone treatment is an appropriate option for addressing abnormal cells detected on a cervical Pap smear. Scroll down to learn more about laser ablation of the cervix, including what you may need to do to prepare for treatment and how you can expect to feel after the procedure.
What does an abnormal Pap smear mean?
A Pap smear is performed by scraping cells from the cervix and sending them for analysis. If a Pap smear returns an abnormal result, it means that abnormal cervical cells were detected in the sample. This could mean the patient has cancerous or pre-cancerous cells, putting her at an increased risk for cervical cancer. In some cases, a repeat Pap smear may be recommended, while other patients may require more immediate intervention with laser ablation cone treatment – also known as carbon dioxide laser surgery of the cervix.
How does laser CO2 ablation work?
Laser ablation of the cervix is performed as an outpatient procedure right in our office and does not require general anesthesia. A topical anesthetic will be used to keep the patient comfortable. Once the patient is appropriately positioned with her feet in stirrups, Dr. Sotomayor will use the CO2 laser to precisely destroy abnormal cervical cells, reducing the patient’s risk of developing cervical cancer.
Do I need to do anything to get ready for laser ablation cone treatment?
During your consultation and pre-treatment appointment, Dr. Sotomayor will provide detailed instructions on preparing for CO2 laser ablation. These may include:
- Not smoking
- Temporarily stopping or adjusting certain medications
- Discontinuing tampon use, sex, or douching
If you are on your period on the day of treatment, it may still be possible to move forward with the procedure if your flow is relatively light. However, Dr. Sotomayor may recommend postponing the treatment if you are having heavy bleeding.
How long is recovery after cervical ablation?
Following a laser ablation of the cervix, patients should plan to rest for 1 – 3 days at home. Light desk work and other activities are permitted, but more strenuous physical activities will be off-limits. It is normal to experience a light, watery discharge for several days or weeks after the procedure. Patients may be instructed to avoid tampon use, douching, and sex following CO2 laser ablation. After some time, a repeat Pap smear can be performed to ensure the procedure was effective and that abnormal cells are no longer detected, giving patients the peace of mind they deserve.
Reduce your risk of cervical cancer with a laser ablation cone treatment in Norcross, GA
If you have received an abnormal Pap smear result, let experienced OB/GYN Dr. Gerry Sotomayor help reduce your risk of cervical cancer and put your mind at ease with a quick, convenient, and effective laser ablation cone treatment. To schedule your consultation for cervical ablation in the Norcross/Peachtree Corners area, call Gynecology and Cosmetic Surgery Center of Atlanta today.