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"Smear test follow up"

About: Pilgrim Hospital / Gynaecology

(as a service user),

I received a letter about 3 months after my smear telling me I have abnormal cells. This is very worrying for a woman... especially having to wait so long for the results. The letter included a leaflet on colposcopy and said an appointment would follow.

I received my appt but it was cancelled. I received another appt for a week later.

I got to the hospital 10 mins before my appointment time and booked in. The receptionist was pleasant and told me to sit on the waiting area. Very clinical area, modern but not comfortable. I was nervous. There was a couple with a child in the waiting area who spent most of the time screaming in tantrum which was not conducive to a calming wait.

After about 20 mins I was weighed and bp taken. I then went back to wait with the screaming child. The receptionist did ask the male and child to wait elsewhere.

After another approx 15 mins i was called through. The 2 nurses were lovely... I cannot praise them highly enough. They tried to keep me updated as to everything that was happening.  The doctor doing the procedure was clearly in training and was being guided by another doctor. 

The procedure is necessary but unpleasant. I was in discomfort all the time and in pain at times. 

Afterwards the doctors told me they would write to me. It wasn't until I asked that they told me I didn't have cervical cancer. They seemed a little surprised that I asked! 

I then asked the nurse what would happen next and she explained fully. 

The clinic is very clean and new but there is nothing there to make you feel at ease. No magazine to read, no water/drinks, no music, no tv. Very clinical. 

This is a very worrying time, especially for ladies who know what is going to happen while they are there. Some comforts would help to relax beforehand.

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