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Nurse refused to do a smear test

(107 Posts)
weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 21:18:22

Have been suffering alot of anxiety and part of that is a fear of cervical cancer. I got the HPV virus on my first ever sexual encounter aged 17, and was told i'd need an annual smear. I have had abnormal smears and treatment for abnormal cells in the past but i'm currently on a 3 yr recall. My doctor said to book in for a smear for reassurance, but today at the appointment the nurse refused to do it. Can i go somewhere else? I take full responsibility for my health and dont actually enjoy having smear tests, but its sensible i think. Feeling a bit confused.

KaFayOLay Mon 19-Sep-11 21:20:00

Why did the nurse refuse?

AuntieMonica Mon 19-Sep-11 21:20:55

there must have been a reason the nurser refused to do it - are you having your period or finished with the last 2 days?
have you got a sexual health clinic locally you could use?

Allboxedin Mon 19-Sep-11 21:21:29

Yes, why did she refuse?

amistillsexy Mon 19-Sep-11 21:23:58

I'd go back to the GP and tell her/him that the nurse refused. Sounds like a breakdown in communication.

kitya Mon 19-Sep-11 21:24:11

She must have given you a reason. Did you have an appointment? is it your usual place? when did you last have one?

weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 21:25:16

Because she said it wasnt due. I'm in the middle if the month, which is why i made the appt for today. She saud the last one was done in 2009, so come back next year. confused

catsareevil Mon 19-Sep-11 21:25:57

I have heard that some labs wont look at smears done outwith certain criteria. I dont know if that is true or not, but if it is, and the nurse knew that your smear would not be examined tht could be a reason?

weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 21:26:31

I just want an annual one for reassurance. She said that the computer says 3 yr recall. End of.

thisisyesterday Mon 19-Sep-11 21:27:36

oh ffs this makes me so angry

she would rather waste the appointment beucase you're not "due" a smear than just get on and bloody do it???

argh. i would complain OP. you have every right to request a smear test, even if the powers that be have decided you don't need one.
and if you were there and ready it really wouldn't have hurt her to do it would it? not like she was going to offer the appointment to anyone else hmm

weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 21:27:59

Yes, she said the lab wouldnt do itconfused how weird is that? Surely me and my doctor are in charge not a nurse and a lab?

weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 21:30:30

I dont like this nurse, she doesnt have much of a bedside manner. I'm very snxious about my health being a single mother, who's going to be there for my kids if i'm not. sad

MrsJamesMartin Mon 19-Sep-11 21:34:05

She's right, the lab won't process it. They won't process anything that falls outside of what the screening criteria are. They won't process routine smears on over 64's or under 25's, ones done before the 3 yr screening period if that is the period the woman is on.

You can pay to have smears done more frequently if you choose to.

It is a screening tool at the end of the day, its not diagnostic and if someone is symptomatic then smears should be bypassed and go straight to colposcopy. Your GP should know this tbh.

ledkr Mon 19-Sep-11 21:34:23

Ive had this op,i had the virus years ago and only had one extra smear before i went back onto 3 yrly.I had already had breast cancer very young so was pretty paranoid,I ended up lying and saying id had some bleeding just to get it.
I am now awaiting a repeat smear for abnormal cells so i know what aworry it is.
My advice is either do what i did or pay privately.

catsareevil Mon 19-Sep-11 21:34:28

I think that blaming the nurse is a bit of a red herring here. Would you rather that she took it from you knowing that it would be discarded?

Allboxedin Mon 19-Sep-11 21:35:23

She should be glad you are actually going for your smears and are concerned about it. Many arent/don't and end up with a lot more problems that could have been prevented earlier on.
It could be also that the it costs the lab a lot of money to do smears etc and maybe thats why thye have to have certain criteria - even so, bit silly of them really when they know you are at risk.

forrestgump Mon 19-Sep-11 21:39:57

I too have been refused a smear, I wanted one before we tried for our 2nd baby, as my smear was due, but should i have fallen pregnant in the mean time, I would of had to of waited a year for example.

It isnt the nurses fault, and if this is something you can do privatly then that is what you need do.

frustating yes, but she is only doing her job.

banana87 Mon 19-Sep-11 21:40:52

I don't think its true that the lab wouldn't process it. I have annual smears at my GP, always without any questions asked (I also have HPV and have had a history of abnormal smears, and am currently on the "3 year" schedule). She should have swabbed you, it would have taken 2 minutes of her time.

Sidge Mon 19-Sep-11 21:41:10

I'm a practice nurse and we're not allowed to do smears if you haven't been called, and aren't due.

If a doctor requests it for a clinical reason (such as postcoital bleeding, intermenstrual bleeding) then s/he has to do the smear, filling a blank form in for the reasons it needs doing and sign and request it accordingly. The nurse doesn't have that "authority".

Anxiety/reassurance isn't a clinical indicator for an early smear and the GP was actually the one at fault for telling you to book in 'for reassurance', not the nurse. She was just following the protocol.

MrsJamesMartin Mon 19-Sep-11 21:43:27

Banana I am very surprised that you can get annual smears on a 3 yr recall.

Yes a swab could have been done but to what end? It may show that there is HPV present, but there's nothing that can be done to change that so surely that would heighten the op's anxiety?

Sidge Mon 19-Sep-11 21:43:39

banana87 swabbed her for what? HPV?

GPs don't currently swab for HPV. It is in the process of being introduced but isn't available routinely yet.

Those of you saying FFS just do the smear - there's no point doing a smear if the lab is just going to bin it.

MangoMonster Mon 19-Sep-11 21:43:46

I think it's sensible too. Did they refuse it as it was before three years? You might have to go private?

ColdSancerre Mon 19-Sep-11 21:45:46

I have also been refused a smear, despite having had the letter calling me in for one. Actually refused isn't fair, the nurse gave me a choice but said the lab wouldn't do it. It had been three years since my last NHS smear hence the recall letter but only two years since a private smear for which the results had also been sent to my GP as well as private consultant.

The nurse said that there was some conflicting split of tasks between the lab, who wouldn't do the test because they would know it wasn't 3 years since last smear and I was on a 3 year recall, and the people who send out the reminder letter. It wasted the nurse appointment at my GP, which I booked as I had the reminder letter.

weevilswobble Mon 19-Sep-11 22:06:04

I was also told 20 yrs ago that stress was also a factor in developing cancer. So one worries especially when life is stressy.

MrsJamesMartin Mon 19-Sep-11 22:07:43

Weevils, has your GP offered you any support with your anxiety?

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