Why have my smear tests suddenly got so painful???

(67 Posts)
Jessi1979 Thu 18-Jun-15 18:47:27

I've never exactly looked forward to smear tests but have only ever found them to be uncomfortable before but my last two have been so painful I've actually yelped and cried afterwards! The first painful one I just put it down to the nurse being heavy handed but it was a different nurse this time and it was even worse! Has this happened to anyone else?

OP’s posts: |
mistymeanour Fri 19-Jun-15 18:08:07

This has happened to me. The clinic have new special tables with particular places for your feet and use plastic/disposable speculums (supposedly to make it all easier and less painful) but since these innovations my last two have been very sharp and scrapy

oneowlgirl Fri 19-Jun-15 18:18:47

They've been particularly painful for a couple of years now - my friend told me the procedure had changed a bit as had the implement, but to be honest I don't know if that's true, I just know that a couple of years ago one friend commented & since then we've all discussed it!!

Will be great if this thread actually does provide an answer!

Crusoe Fri 19-Jun-15 18:22:45

Totally agree. Had one a few weeks ago and the pain was unbearable, I think the whole surgery heard me screaming. I had to beg the nurse to stop and left in tears really shaken.
I felt a right wimp but honestly it was so painful. I have had 9 IVF's and am really used to all manner of internal investigations but this smear was awful.

LikeSilver Fri 19-Jun-15 18:26:27

Yes! There was one live on This Morning yesterday and the woman looked like nothing was happening and I thought, why can't mine be like that?

I had one this morning and it really hurt. The nurse changed to a smaller speculum (is that the right word?) which was better but still painful.

pinkfrocks Fri 19-Jun-15 18:27:06

They use brushes now - though they have been in use for a few years- not a spatula. A spatula used to kind of wipe over the cervix whereas the brush- like a tiny bottle brush- has to go into the cervical opening as well as round the edges- I think! This prodding is maybe what causes the 'ouch' factor.

Jessi1979 Sat 20-Jun-15 13:03:40

Glad I'm not alone! The nurse said it could be because I had a titled uterus so it could be more painful to get it in the right position... but if they've all been pain free up until my last two surely this wouldn't affect it? Once it was in position her actually taking the swab was fine but my god the bit before was horrific!
I hope they got a good enough sample as I don't want to go through that again for a while!

OP’s posts: |


pinkfrocks Sat 20-Jun-15 14:42:10

Jessi- it depends on whether you mean the pain was from the speculum or the brush itself. It's always going to be a bit 'ouch' to have a bottle brush shoved up your cervix and twiddled.

TheBobbinIsWound Sat 20-Jun-15 15:26:28

My last one was horrible too. confused

I also saw the the stick thing after it came out. This time it was all bloody and was blimming painful too. Epic period pain.

I'm lucky. I'm still given the small speculum. I get so nervous that there's no way in apparently! shock

ClarissaTheTeenageBitch Sat 20-Jun-15 15:30:19

Oh God, this isn't helping me pluck up the courage to go for a long overdue smear! I'm 'difficult to examine' as it is confused

wonkylegs Sat 20-Jun-15 15:39:01

Shouldn't have read this as I've got mine coming up this week. ��
Last time I found that it was more comfortable after the nurse suggested that I put my hands under my bum to tilt it into a better position.

Jessi1979 Sat 20-Jun-15 15:47:56

Pinkfrocks - I'm pretty sure it was from the speculum as once it was "clamped" it was fine! Like I said, it's always been uncomfortable but this was actually painful (and I've got a pretty high pain threshold).

Oh no wonkylegs and Clarissa I'm sorry I didn't mean to put anyone off! I'd take a painful smear over undetected cancer any day!

Next time I'll try putting my hands under my bum and see if that helps.

OP’s posts: |
LibrariesGaveUsPower Sat 20-Jun-15 15:58:44

I have been the opposite. I was almost in tears before my last one (5 years overdue blush ). It was fine. I told her I had had a lot of pain and she was extra careful. The brush was waaaay better for me too.

workshyfop Sat 20-Jun-15 15:59:11

My last smear (about a year ago) was agony too. All the ones I'd had before that were completely fine. The nurse said something about not being allowed to use lubricant any more. Is this right? Any nurses out there who are in the know?

isitnearlytime Sat 20-Jun-15 16:37:53

I had one a couple of weeks ago and it was agony, far worse than any previous ones and she drew blood! It was the first time I'd ever seen the brush so I guess that must've been the reason.

PatsyNoPasta Sat 20-Jun-15 17:19:31

My nurse colleague describes taking smears as "scrubbing the loo with a toilet brush'". That might explain the blood. shock

oneowlgirl Sun 21-Jun-15 13:30:24

I was told to put my hands under my bum too to tilt my hips & that helped apparently.

GeorgianaDevonshire Sun 21-Jun-15 15:27:22

Workshyfop - they can use lubricant but are advised only to use a small amount.

gobbin Sun 21-Jun-15 22:00:53

Fuck that if they're only advised to use a small amount of lube! My poor menopausal fanny ain't going to tolerate that sad

SmartAlecMetalGit Sun 21-Jun-15 22:07:49

I'm currently trying to work up the courage to book in for another after having an absolute nightmare one a couple of weeks ago.

I couldn't get past having the speculum opened so it wasn't an issue with the brush, it didn't come anywhere near me. I don't think I've ever experienced anything so painful and when I asked the nurse to stop there was a horrible pause before she did when I honestly thought she was going to keep going anyway. I felt like I was either going to pass out or be sick and was really shaky for the rest of the day.

I had internal pain (not period pain, it felt more like bruising) for a good week afterwards and I'm terrified of going back and trying again now sad

DoreenLethal Sun 21-Jun-15 22:17:24

I bled for three days after the last one. Really not a nice experience. At all.

Elliptic5 Sun 21-Jun-15 22:25:12

I've often had problems in the past as I've got an acutely tilted uterus, however now I'm in my fifties it's become impossible for the nurse to do the smear test at all as it's far too painful.

MorvahRising Sun 21-Jun-15 23:25:23

Interesting to read that the procedure might have changed. I never had an issue until the last two which were both really painful. I've just had to have a pelvic ultrasound though and was expecting that to be painful too but it was no problem at all!

Silverweed Mon 22-Jun-15 21:34:05

I've found the last couple of smears painful but that's not surprising given the postmenopausal state of my vag. However, Dsis was same, in fact even worse it was so painful they could not do it, and yes they told her they weren't using lube any more as it interferes with the results/microscopy/or something. Nurse kindly suggested she got two weeks worth of vaginal HRT and try again - she said it was great and really helped.

I'm afraid I cheated before my last one after hearing from Dsis, and pre-lubed myself with a squirt of KY!

mrsdavidbowie Mon 22-Jun-15 21:36:59

This morning I had a smear, polyp removed and biopsy ....wasn't expecting all that!
I was shaking and physically sick afterwards.
And still have horrific cramps and nausea
I think the smear was the easy bit!!!!

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