alaska women's health

Cone Biopsy

When is a cone biospsy recommended?

Your provider may suggest a cone biopsy if you have had one or more abnormal pap smears and colposcopies.

What does it involve?

A cone biopsy involves the removal of more cervical cells than a LEEP or cryotherapy usually remove. A cone biopsy is a quick outpatient procedure that is performed in an ambulatory surgical center (our office is an ambulatory surgical center) or in a hospital. It usually takes less than an hour and you can return home the same day. A cone biopsy removes a cone-shaped piece of your cervix that is sent to a lab for analysis. The purpose is to remove all of the abnormal cervical cells so that normal, healthy cervical cells will grow back in their place.

Who is a candidate for cone biopsy?

Your provider will help you determine if you are a good candidate for in office cone biopsy or if you would be better suited to a hospital environment. This will depend on whether or not local anesthesia (the provider numbing your cervix in the office and you remain awake) or general anesthesia (you are put to sleep in a hospital operating room) is appropriate in your case. When ready to start the procedure, your provider will insert a speculum into your vagina and visualize your cervix. Then he/she will remove a cone-shaped section of your cervix via a scalpel or laser. Your cervix will take four to six weeks to heal after the biopsy.  

cone biopsy anchorage

After the procedure

You should stay home for a couple of days after your cone biopsy. Rest is important, as is not putting anything into your vagina for four to six weeks following your procedure. Your cervix will be susceptible to bleeding and infection for these initial weeks after the cone biopsy. You may bleed and cramp for a few days or have a slight discharge. Use sanitary napkins only, not tampons, for the first month. Your provider may give you medication to relieve any discomfort. Do not play active sports or insert anything into your vagina (this includes tampons, douching, or having sex) for four to six weeks after your procedure. Until your cervix is fully healed any of the above activities could cause your cervix to bleed or become injured or infected.   

If you have severe abdominal or pelvic pain, fever, chills, or heavy bleeding contact your provider immediately. These could be signs of rare but serious side effects. Your provider will receive your biopsy results from the lab approximately a week after your procedure. You will have a follow up visit with your provider three to six weeks after your procedure to make sure that your cervix is healing well and to determine the best screening process for you. You will most likely have pap smears and pelvic exams more often than before since you now have a history of abnormal cervical