The Loop Electrocautery Excision Procedure (LEEP) is used to diagnose and to remove most abnormal tissue problems on the outer and inner cervix, vagina, and vulva. The LEEP treatment is about 92% effective in completely removing the precancerous changes; however, there is a small chance (8%) that these precancerous changes may have invisibly spread to another area of the cervix, vagina, or vulva and may be in such an early phase that it is not yet possible to see them through the colposcope.
In order to determine that you are among the 92% of women who have been treated fully, you will need to have Pap smears performed every three months for one year after the LEEP treatment. If you have any persistent abnormality, it will be found on one of these Pap smears.
After this first year, you will need a Pap smear only once a year. While the American Cancer Society has said that some low risk women only need a Pap smear every three years, you will not fit into this low risk category. In addition, be sure to use safe sex techniques always if you are not monogamous.
For more LEEP information, please call our office.
Before Your LEEP Procedure
Take 800 mg of Ibuprofen or Naprosyn/Naproxen Sodium between 1 and 3 hours before your scheduled procedure. Your nurse will tell you everything about the procedure and how it will feel when you arrive. You will be comfortable throughout the procedure. You will even be able to drive yourself home, or go back to work after the procedure.
After Your LEEP Procedure
Once the LEEP procedure is done, there is generally no further discomfort for most women.
Few women will have some cramping. If you have any cramping afterwards, take another 600 mg of Ibuprofen or Naprosyn/Naproxen Sodium about 6 hours after the first dose. Please notify us if your cramps last longer than one day.
Monitor your own health for the next week or so. If you should develop vaginal bleeding that is heavier or longer than your normal menstrual period, pain that is increasing, temperature in excess of 100.4 °F or shaking chills, please contact us immediately. If you feel sickly or have persistent pelvic discomfort after LEEP therapy, please call us.
Smoking suppresses the immune system from being able to fight the HPV infection. The carcinogens from cigarettes go through your blood and into the cervical mucus; they are potent promoters of cancer growth. Research shows that smoking helps cervical cancer grow. Also consider getting the HPV vaccine Gardasil to help your immune system fight the HPV infection.