Oncology (General Cancer)/Pap Smear


Good Afternoon

I had a pap smear on August 1,2013 abd my doctors office called me back a week later and stated the the pap came back abnormal and that I need to come in to the office to have a  colposopy, In addition I had not had a regular period for 4 months ( I am 47 so I assumed that I was pre-menopausal) My luck the day of the Colposopy and biopsy I started to spot therefore I was unable to have the procedure, I rescheduled for a week and a half later.  Once again my luck my GYN could not perform the test because my cervix is so badly scarred that she could not perform the procedure she then explained that she would need to perform the procedure in the OR.  However once I got to the office My GYN explained that My results are Atypical Granular cells of unspecific origin.  The procedure is schedules 4 weeks from today...........!!!!!!!! needless to say I am scared to death and the total time from the  pap will be almost two months. In addition to all of this I have not had a PAP in four years and I have rheumatoid Arthritis and have been on immune suppressants for 15 years.  What are the chances that this is cancer and am I wrong in thinking that 8 weeks is too long to wait for a answer?

First of all, the atypical granular cells would not be an indicator of cancer.  They do point to something abnormal, which could be chronic low-grade infection as well as a malignant process.  If you've been on immunosuppressants and have a scarred up cervix, that would be enough to cause the findings.  As for the delay in the colposcopy, I don't think you lose anything.  From atypia to cancer (if cancer is the destination) takes several years.  And I'm sure of your doctor was deeply concerned, there would be more rapid movement.  So I suggest you go along with his/her suggestion, and try not to worry, which I know is easier for me to say than for you to do.  Good luck.  

Oncology (General Cancer)

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Donald Higby, M.D.


I can answer almost all questions related to the treatment and natural course of most kinds of cancer, especially cancers of prostate, colon, lung and breast.


I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.

American Society of Clinical Oncology

New England Journal of Medicine American Journal of Medicine Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Hematology Transfusion Medicine

MD, Stanford University Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

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America's Best Physicians, last 14 years

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