|Is a biopsy necessary?|
The Pap smear is a screening tool for superficial cells, but a biopsy is the only way to make an actual diagnosis. The biopsy is done as part of the HRA procedure. Pain after a biopsy is often minimal, and over-the-counter Tylenol or Advil is usually enough to make you comfortable. You might experience a small amount of bleeding with bowel movements for a few days.
This occasionally lasts up to a week. You should not insert anything into the anus (suppositories, fingers, toys), or have anal sex until the bleeding stops. The biopsy report may describe low grade or high grade lesions. This information is critical in determining the best type of treatment. Low grade lesions do not necessarily require treatment, but they should be monitored with periodic HRA. High grade lesions require treatment to hopefully prevent the possibility of progression of the abnormal cells to cancer, which could also spread to other parts of the body.