LEEP stands for loop electrosurgical excision procedure. It's used to treat abnormal cell growth (dysplasia). A fine wire loop is used to remove a small amount of tissue from your cervix. This can be done in the healthcare provider’s office. You can go back to your routine the same day. Schedule your LEEP for a time when you are not menstruating.
During the procedure
You’ll place your feet in stirrups. Your healthcare provider then inserts a speculum into your vagina. The speculum holds the walls of the vagina open to let the healthcare provider see the cervix:
Your cervix is numbed with a local anesthetic.
A mild vinegar or iodine solution may be applied to your cervix. This helps to highlight any dysplasia.
Your healthcare provider may look through a colposcope. This helps him or her to get a close-up view of your cervix.
The loop is inserted through your vagina and moved toward the cervix.
The loop is used to remove a small piece of cervical tissue.
A medicated solution may be applied to the cervix. This helps reduce bleeding.
After the procedure
You may have a watery, pink discharge and mild cramping following the procedure. Also, the solution used to decrease bleeding may cause a dark, vaginal discharge for a few days. Don't place anything in your vagina or have sex until your healthcare provider tells you it's OK. Your cervix should heal completely within a few weeks.
When to call your healthcare provider
Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following:
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