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Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Cervical Cancer research and treatment discussions

Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Postby gower » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:33 am

First off please dont be rude or mean. I suffer from anxiety/panic and have a huge fear of doctors. I havent had a pap smear in almost 6 years and I know I need one but just can not get over the fear to even make the apointment. Im so scared I already have cervical cancer(no symptoms) just my fear. I am 33 years old and always had paps up till about 6 yrs ago. Never an abnormal one but I do smoke and I am getting older. Anyway I was just wondering if their are any other women out their who waited a long time to get a pap and was still ok?
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Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Postby lisandro » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:35 am

Do tthe right thing and get an appointment soon.I suspect all will be well but if there were issues you would want to face the prob head on. Find a doctor who might be able to help you overcome your fear of doctors. Be honest and tell them how scared and nervous you are.
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Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Postby gunn » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:43 am

It depends. If you have had unprotected sex with anyone in the last 6 years, then there is a risk of getting HPV. It generally does not turn into full blown cervical cancer until later in life, which is why it's important to get pap smears every few years (or more depending on how many sexual partners you have). HPV can be detected during a pap smear, and if caught early can be treated before it turns into something serious (cervical cancer). I understand you have anxiety about seeing a doctor, but it's important to have one. It will offer you piece of mind to see if everything is alright.

So please see a doctor. Good luck!
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Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Postby manville60 » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:49 am

I used to be like you, until I developed Breast Cancer. Now I go every year for my Pap test and ultrasound because the pills I am on, cause Uterine Cancer. (It fixes one thing, and breaks something else)I know...my stomach does flip flops when I make an appointment too! And then the week before, I can't stop thinking about it! I practically kiss the floor when I leave the office! You are not the only one who feels that way. I am scared of cervical cancer too..in fact I just went for an ultrasound today and half of me doesn't want to know the results! I am old too! 44! Yes, I waited until I was 32! Once again, you are not alone...and the doctor didn't even make fun of me! LOL I thought he's say "What the heck are you waiting for?!" But he was VERY Understanding.
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Women who havent had a pap smear in a long time?

Postby willamar » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:57 am

Hi, Tricia –

I know it is hard to have worries such as this weighing heavy on your mind. To answer your question, yes, there are other women who have waited a long time to get a pap smear and whose results were fine. Like you, the longer they waited, the more scared they became. The more scared they became, the more shame they felt. The more shame they felt, the more anxiety they experienced and the cycle of fear-shame-anxiety goes round n’ round. It’s a horrible feeling that is never far from your mind.

I see you’ve already received some very informative responses, so I will refrain from reminding you why it is important to have regular pap smears. Besides, I already know that you know that you need to get yourself in to see someone for and a pap smear/pelvic exam. So, let’s try to come up with some solutions.

Can you talk to some other women and ask them for recommendations for a medical professional? Ask them what they like about their physician: Are they kind? Are they understanding? Do they have a tendency to lecture their patients? Make you feel stupid? Because I can tell you this: there are a lot of kind compassionate medical professionals out there who want to make sure you feel at ease.

If you don’t feel comfortable talking to other women face-to-face, I have a great suggestion for a website for you: mamapedia.com. You do not need to be a mother to join this site and you can conduct your research by State/City and then by specialty. You can also post a question on that site similar to the one you posted here, asking for a kind, understanding physician who won’t make you feel bad for not having had an exam in 6 years. Be as honest as you can in posting your question and I am confident that you will receive some very helpful replies.

Finally, once you decide on which medical professional you are going to see, sometimes it helps to get a close friend involved in a) picking up the phone and making the appointment for you; and 2) picking you up and going to the appointment with you for moral support.

I hope that just posting your question here on Yahoo will help to ease your anxiety and help you take the next step in getting in for a check-up so you can put your mind at ease. Good luck and I hope everyone’s been helpful to you!
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