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What is a cone biopsy?: A cone biopsy is a procedure in which a cone shaped piece of your cervix is removed in order to evaluate and treat cervical dysplasia (abnormal cervical cells). It is also called cervical conization.Why is it performed? You may have a cone biopsy if your pap followed by a colposcopy indicates moderate to severe cervical cell changes. It is also done to remove and treat abnormal tissue. It can also be used to diagnose cervical cancer and to see how extensive the disease is.

How is the tissue removed?: A scalpel is used to remove a cone shaped piece of your cervix. The procedure will be done in an operating room with you asleep under general anesthesia.

Risks: Risk with a cone biopsy are minimal. There is a very low risk that excessive bleeding will occur that requires a transfusion. Narrowing of the cervix may occur, making it more difficult to become pregnant. You may also develop an incompetent (weakening of) cervix, thus making miscarriages or preterm delivery more likely in pregnancy.

What should I do before my surgery? Before surgery you will be scheduled for a pre-operative appointment at which time you will have a pre-operative exam and complete paper work. If you have any questions make sure to ask them at this time. You will be given your papers (orders and consent) to take to the hospital or surgery center. You will have a pre-operative intake appointment the week before surgery, at which time they will pre-admit you and draw your blood work. They will notify you when your surgery is. They will also notify you of medications you may or may not take before your surgery. Do not eat or drink anything the night prior to your surgery, beginning at midnight. Present at the place of your surgery at the time they instructed you to do so.

What can I expect after the surgery?: After a cone biopsy, you can expect bleeding for up to one week and spotting and discharge for up to 3 weeks. Avoid tampons and sexual intercourse for three weeks. Nothing in the vagina is the general rule of thumb.

When should you call the doctor?: You need to call your doctor persistent pelvic pain, heavy bleeding (soaking more than a pad and hour), and a foul smelling discharge. Also, watch out for a fever, which can indicate infection.