2:54 pm - 07/06/2009

How long to abstain from sex after a colposcopy?

Hi all,

I have a colposcopy scheduled tomorrow - pretty nervous about it. I just called the OBGYN to ask some questions, and the nurse there said that I would need to abstain from sex for a week after the procedure. Is this the generally recommended time? It seems long to me... And why? Is it just to prevent pain/discomfort, or is there a concern about infection?

If I decided to have sex four or five days after the colpo, would there be any significant risks? Or is my clinic being over-cautious?
melodic_lyrics 6th-Jul-2009 07:04 pm (UTC)
Usually the reason they advise you not to have sex is because they take a biopsy during the colpo. Since you would have a site that could get infected, it would be best to abstain from sex, so you are not introducing bacteria into the area.

It's probably best to listen to the advice of your clinic so you are not risking infection. However, if for some reason you decide you just can't wait, use condoms, and be sure that anything that goes into your vagina has been washed/cleaned recently.
melodic_lyrics 6th-Jul-2009 07:05 pm (UTC)
Oh, and for reference, I was told to abstain from sex (actually I think I was told nothing in my vagina, not just sex) for 2 weeks after my colposcopy because I had 2 biopsies.
macabre 6th-Jul-2009 07:10 pm (UTC)
I was told two weeks as well.
betterbebalboa 6th-Jul-2009 07:13 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the advice. I only ask because it will be my last weekend alone with my boyfriend for several months (if not longer). So more of a disappointment than anything else. But of course, health comes first.
kriquet 6th-Jul-2009 07:12 pm (UTC)
Yes, I was told one week.
violet_tigress1 6th-Jul-2009 07:13 pm (UTC)
It would really hurt if you had sex too soon after.
kayeyem 6th-Jul-2009 07:28 pm (UTC)
I was told to wait 2 weeks before doing anything that included penetration (including tampons) after my colposcopy. My obgyn told me that baseically, they were "pinching" off tissue and that it needed time to heal properly and that doing anything penetrative before it was healed could disrupt the healing (think...pick a scab off, I guess?) and possibly cause an infection.

Maybe you could just have fun? Like...everything you can do that doesn't include PIV/Penetration? Make it a game and have fun?
jennifer0246 6th-Jul-2009 08:43 pm (UTC)
because a biopsy causes an open wound that needs time to heal, it's very standard to recommend pelvic rest, or nothing per vagina for a certain period of time post-biopsy. for some doctors, they say 7 days, some 10 days, some 14 days. in the office i'm most familiar with, the recommendation is to abstain until 1. all discharge post-procedure has stopped (they use a solution that causes a chunky, brown, yucky discharge to help healing) and 2. you feel up to it. sometimes this is 3 days, sometimes its 30 days; either is fine and valid.
betterbebalboa 6th-Jul-2009 08:52 pm (UTC)
Ok, that makes a lot of sense.

Sorry if this is a weird question, but does "pelvic rest" include abstaining from clitoral orgasms? They still involve vaginal contractions, but they don't involve penetration, obviously... just wondering.
jennifer0246 6th-Jul-2009 09:06 pm (UTC)
i think you can make a strong argument for Leaving It All Alone for a period of time, to reduce the risk of discomfort, etc. in my mind though, i think it'd be fine to engage in things which do not involve insertion after a couple days or so.
betterbebalboa 6th-Jul-2009 09:19 pm (UTC)
That would be a good compromise. Yeah, nothing's going to happen down there for at least three or four days.
mslivewire 6th-Jul-2009 08:57 pm (UTC)
I had one about 10 years ago - the theory then was to abstain 2 days before and after .... then use condoms for a week after resuming relations ... not sure where this whole waiting weeks is coming from.
ariagirl2010 6th-Jul-2009 09:25 pm (UTC)
I was also told to wait a week. My boyfriend and I decided to have sex after 6 days (we figured it was close enough to a week ;)) and I wound up bleeding pretty heavily (we think the "scab" from the biopsies probably got dislodged). So I would suggest waiting at least a week, if not a little more.
scott ingram 11th-Aug-2014 01:33 pm (UTC)
did you call your Dr or ride it out?
helenkacan 6th-Jul-2009 09:31 pm (UTC)
Well, I've had a couple of uterine biopsies and ouch, ouch, ouch, OUCH!

Mind you, I didn't do anything remotely sexual for a while (but as it's been nearly a decade, I can't remember how long); however, while I was still healing and getting more and more horny and frustrated, I did retrain myself to have a clitoral orgasm and squelch (hee - neat word) the corresponding uterine contractions COMPLETELY. So, if you can have some fun when you're nearly healed without provoking contractions, I'd think you'll be okay.
sandi1743 8th-Jul-2009 02:15 am (UTC)
it should be noted to the OP that (thankfully) most women that get a colop are not going to get uterine biopsies
elialshadowpine 6th-Jul-2009 09:32 pm (UTC)
I was told 3-4wks after my biopsy. However, I explained my situation to the nurse practitioner. I was just about to move cross-country to be with my boyfriend that I hadn't seen in months. She said at absolute minimum, 5 days, but even then strongly discouraged it on a "better safe than sorry" principle.

I would generally not go with "absolute minimum", but extenuating circumstances, man! ;)
betterbebalboa 6th-Jul-2009 09:40 pm (UTC)
Hehe, thanks for understanding.
sandi1743 8th-Jul-2009 02:06 am (UTC)
i was told that i could resume "fun activities" (the actual phrase used) when i felt up to it - it was about 3 days.
Solesito0666 Hi.3rd-Dec-2012 08:46 pm (UTC)
I actually had an colposcopy done friday and then i had sex the next day.I had some tissue come out and stuff but i was feeling fine. But now reading these quotes is freaking me out about getting an infection. What are the signs that i should look for since i didnt follow my dr.s instructions. Someone plz help.
Angela Freese RE: Hi.10th-Oct-2016 12:15 pm (UTC)
Did you end up getting an infection?
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