Understanding Cervical Procedures: The Gynecological Conditions that May Lead to Surgery of the Cervix

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The cervix is located at the lowermost portion of a woman’s uterus. It is a cylinder-shaped bundle of tissue–typically one inch in length–that connects the uterus with the vagina. The portion of the cervix that can be seen during a gynecologic examination from inside the vagina is also known as the ectocervix whereas the tunnel from the external into the uterus is known as the endocervix. This is where sperm travels to reach unfertilized eggs after they are released from the Fallopian tubes.

There are many different conditions of the cervix, which may require a surgical intervention. One common condition of the cervix is cervical cancer. Cervical cancer is typically caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). However, regular Pap smears can usually prevent cervical cancer in the majority of women. Another condition that some women have to face is cervicitis, which is inflammation of the cervix. This is usually caused by an infection such as gonorrhea, herpes, and Chlamydia. If the infection spreads, it can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, which can do damage to a woman’s reproductive system. Some women may also have cervical dysplasia (abnormal cells in the cervix that can lead to cervical cancer) or cervical polyps (growths that attach to the cervix and can cause vaginal bleeding).

There are other conditions which may lead to the need for cervical procedures. If you have any of these conditions or other gynecologic problems, it’s important to have a comprehensive understanding of the different types of cervical procedures.

Cone Biopsy

One cervical procedure is known as a cone biopsy. This is a procedure in which a cone-shaped wedge of tissue is actually removed from the cervix. The tissue is then examined under a microscope. Women who have abnormal tissue in the cervix may need to have this procedure done.

Loop electrosurgical excision procedure (LEEP)

A LEEP procedure is also used to remove abnormal tissue from the cervix, and it uses a thin, low-voltage wire loop that is electrified to cut away the tissue. A LEEP procedure is typically done as an outpatient procedure at a clinic or hospital.

Cervical Cryosurgery

Cryosurgery of the cervix is the use of extreme cold to freeze parts of the cervix. This is also done to remove abnormal cells of the cervix.

Cervical Cerclage

In this procedure, stitches are placed in the cervix to hold it closed. This procedure is used to prevent miscarriage and keep an incompetent cervix from opening early.

These are just some of the surgical procedures that may be required if you have a cervical condition. If you have issues that require cervical procedures, the best thing to do is to see your OB/GYN and speak with him or her. Your physician will be able to help you determine the best course of action for your situation. It is important to remember that you are not alone and that many women are making decisions similar to yours.

To learn more about cervical procedures, have a look at www.completewomencare.com.

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