Smear Fear Tomorrow :( :(

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  • Urgh I have to go for ANOTHER smear test tomorrow because last year mine came back as 'abnormal cells' so then I had to go have this puncture skin sample thing done which felt so strange and unpleasant - that also just came back as 'a bit abnormal but nothing really to worry about'

    So then the nhs keep sending me letters saying this year I need ANOTHER smear test to check things are all after putting it off and putting it off I finally made an opt for tomorrow, but I can't stop freaking out about it!!

    Is it really necessary?? I mean I have nothing unusual happening in my body that makes me think it is, but then it's that ultimate thing of if you don't and then there is something wrong and it's too late blahblah....what if I need to have that puncture skin sample thing again? god the sensation is so horrible and freaky I'm not sure how I'll make myself go through it...I'm so scared and I'm such a hypochondriac I wish this whole thing would just go away and there's no escaping it meh I'm such a whimp...thanks for listening....

  • I try to do some relaxation in the waiting room, then go to another place in my head while it's going on, somewhere I feel safe and happy, I pretend my body is not there. Also, try to break it all down into stages, like, getting there is not scarey, opening a door is not scarey, checking in is not scarey, etc, then you can get to the actual moment that does actually scare you in a more relaxed state. Also, tell them how you feel, most nurses etc are quite helpful. Good luck, I hope it's just iffy tests, it sometimes is, but you need to know, I needed treatment in my twenties.

  • NO...actually don't think I'm gonna be ready to do it tomorrow! Last year I had two and a colposcopy and all came back the same..I was looking on the NHS website and it seems sometimes this happens to women year after year...I basically have a phobia of cancer anyway and can't imagine having to go through this ordeal every year! There's just no way out of this, is there anything a dr. can actually do if your seriously anxious about it? I feel so stupid and pathetic :(

    "About 2,900 cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed each year in the UK. This amounts to 2% of all cancer cases diagnosed in women."

    that's an extremely small number considering how many women are in this country! oohh I just don't know, maybe i should put off for a little while it's not like I haven't been tested 'recently', like i said i had two last year alone!

  • What are you actually scared of? The procedure itself or the results being bad (or both)? The smear test itself is horrible but its over quickly. Hopefully the results are ok then you're off the hook for another year. If they're not ok then surely its best caught when the cells are in 'abnormal' stage rather than cancerous? I don't know what the skin puncture thing is (sounds horrid too) but all of that would be a LOT better than cancer treatment. That 2% of diagnosed cases is surely due to the fact that it gets caught and treated by smear tests before it turns to cancer. I'm just trying to put it into perspective. I'm sorry you're having to go through it. Like Enigma's Mum said, the nurses are usually understanding and should be nice to you. Good luck with whatever decision you make :hug:

  • Take your time. If you aren't ready to have it done tomorrow, that's okay, it's entirely your decision, and you're in control of the situation. I'm not surprised you don't want it done, smear tests are really horrible, it always makes me laugh when people call them, 'quick and painless':rolleyes:, they're painful, invasive, and the wait for the results is terrifying. Unfortunately though, we're all supposed to just get on with it. You coped the last time, though, and you coped with the puncture skin biopsy, too, so you can do this!

    Try taking some rescue remedy and some painkillers beforehand if you decide to go ahead with it, and remember to tell the doctor/nurse the minute you feel uncomfortable. If it comes back as 'abnormal cells' again, make an appointment with your GP and discuss it, he/she should be able to put your mind at rest. A lot of smears come back as abnormal, yet the majority are nothing to worry about.

  • I've just seen this. I hope everything went ok today if you went through with it? It really is a horrible thing to have to go through, but as a fellow hypochondriac I know that the worrying about what might be going on is usually worse in the end. xx

  • I know you said you are scared of cancer but that is the reason you should go have a smear. With a smear they can detect the smallest changes really early so that they can catch cervical cancer before it even really becomes cancer.

    I know how horrible it is...I have kind got used to invasive examinations and tests now as for the last almost 2 years i have needed them constantly. What I find helps if i am really nervous is to make sure it is a female doctor and I explain to her why I am so anxious. If you have the right doctor and your anxiety is that bad you may be able to get a small Valium prescription. I have had this over hospital treatment before. Was prescribed 5, 2mg Valium to get me through it :)

  • thanks beach and elfie... yeah I didn't go through with it, but I totally agree thinking about it is far worst! I've decided the new year is I said I had one only a year ago and I think it's cos my life is so manic right now it just seems too much..thanks kaiya what you said made a lot of sense, I think what I'll do is go have a chat with the very nice female doctor I have and explain my difficulties :)

  • I had a smear done many years ago and it came back with abnormal cells. I had a couple more tests at the time, neither of which I can say I enjoyed, but they weren't as bad as many of the tests I had done when they were diagnosing me with M.E. The year after I had to go back again for a smear, just like you are being asked to do, and my smear came back as normal. I was a bit shocked and asked them if they were sure, they offered me another smear, which I had done, because I couldn't believe after the tests the year before and it also came back as normal.

    My advice would be, get it done and get it done as soon as possible, because what is the point in worrying yourself until the New Year, when you could, like me, have a smear that comes back normal and you get a Christmas without having to think about it.

    I know a lot of people really stress about having the smears taken, for a whole number of reasons, but getting past that fear is very empowering. I do not know your reasons for your fear, but I do know that if you face it head on and work your way past it, you will come out the other side feeling like a winner.

    Good Luck with the test. The odds of the test being normal are in your favour and it is much better to find out now, than wait.

  • Yeah your right, I've been thinking that lately and have been feeling a little 'calmer' about the whole thing too...gonna ring monday and take the earliest one they have! Last time I chose the latest date they had, which obviously gave me a lot more time to freak out :S

  • I had one a couple of months ago
    It wasent as bad as I thought and after a dodgy couple of months down below were I thought something was wrong it was clear
    Get the earliest appointment and go for it Hun
    I have agorophobia so just getting out of the house and down to the docs required a heck of a lot never mind the smear fear
    If I can do it anyone can I'm even scared of taking antibiotics
    Go on give em a ring we are all right behind you Hun

  • Yeah your right, I've been thinking that lately and have been feeling a little 'calmer' about the whole thing too...gonna ring monday and take the earliest one they have! Last time I chose the latest date they had, which obviously gave me a lot more time to freak out :S

    I'm just going to repeat what everyone else has said, please do this. The worst thing for you is obviously just thinking about it, once it's done, it's done, and it's much bloody better than finding cancer further down the line. You won't feel it (cancer) in the body initially so don't rely on thinking "you'll know", especially if you have a massive fear of cancer!

    I had a colposcopy a few years back and they took a biopsy - 8 injections in the fanny! And my cells were at stage 3 but pre-cancerous. They advised me to have annual tests but eventually told me I could go back to every 5 years because they'd been consecutively clear. I opted to continue with annual tests. Really, why not? I'd rather not go through it but I'd much rather not have to deal with cervical cancer!

  • I had one done yesterday. It was 1 minute of taking off lower half clothes, 5 mins on the examination table 2 seconds of ouch followed by a bit of someone adjusting a light, waggling a spatula and a couple of giggles with the nurse and the Doctor taking the sample. All done and dusted.

    Midnight^Star, you're right to just book it and go. You can do it. Worrying is pointless, action is GOOD. I hope they give you an appointment very soon and it is all over and done with, so you can get on with doing other stuff.

  • Well I finally grew some courage and went today to have it done, well done me and my silliness haha...:ppp

    thanks everyone for the encouraging messages, it was really nice to hear other people's experiences and found them all generally supportive..I love this forum:hippy:xx