Colposcopy before InFertility Treatment-ICSI: Is it Contraindicated?

Patient

Q: Hello, I am due to start fertility treatment-ICSI in about 10 days and i have just had a letter say that I have mild dyskaryosis and have to go for a colposcopy. My question is - is it okay to have the fertility treatment and then have the colposcopy? I look forward to your answer. H

Doctor

A:   Colposcopy is a procedure wherein a tube with a “sort-of” magnifying glass at the tip will be inserted into your vagina up to the cervix. This is usually indicated when there are abnormal Pap test results. It is like your cervix is being carefully examined under the microscope, looking for abnormal cells, and possibly getting a biopsy from it, if indeed there will be abnormal cells found. It does not usually go beyond the cervix into the uterus. ICSI stands for intracytoplasmic sperm injection. This procedure will involve a very fine needle with the sperm cells injected into the woman’s egg, thereby ensuring fertilization. However, the success rate is ~30% in women under 35. In my opinion, the colposcopy will not affect the ICSI, unless you will have severe bleeding (a rare complication of colposcopy) or infection (also rare) after the colposcopy. These side effects though will usually resolve after 1-2 weeks. I will suggest though you talk to your doctor before doing the colposcopy, informing him/her that you are scheduled for ICSI soon (if this is not the same doctor doing the ICSI). You may try talking about it and ask if you may postpone the colposcopy, weighing the risks vs benefits of course. I do hope I have answered your question. Take care always and best of luck!

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