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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Have CREST syndrome and HPV test showed positive. What is the cause and cure?

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Dr. Stephen Christensen

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :1986

Answered : 212 Questions

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Posted on Wed, 19 Dec 2012 in Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Question: my daughter just got news that she has abnormal cells on her pap smear and that her hpv test is positive. she is not a girl who was sexually active until she was 23. she is only 25 now. she does have an autoimune disease. CREST was the old name for it. her md said she needs a colcoscopy..?? what is that procedue exactly. are you awake for it. she is in tears today. does the autoimmune disease make you more prone to contracting hpv. ?
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Answered by Dr. Stephen Christensen 3 hours later
Hello. I'm Dr. Christensen.

I'm sorry your daughter is having problems.

Colposcopy is a procedure that involves looking at the cervix through a special magnifying instrument called a colposcope. The procedure takes about 20 minutes, and it is usually done in a gynecologist's office or an outpatient surgical center. Your daughter will be awake for her colposcopy, which is very similar to getting a Pap smear done. She'll have a speculum inserted into her vagina, and the doctor will then use the colposcope to examine her cervix. If any abnormal areas are seen, the doctor may obtain biopsies (tiny pieces of tissue). Most women who have cervical biopsies done don't need anesthesia, but the doctor will be prepared to administer a local anesthetic. If biopsies are performed, your daughter may have some spotting and pelvic cramping for a day or two.

As far as I know, having CREST syndrome won't necessarily increase a person's risk for contracting HPV, but if your daughter is taking immunosuppressant medications for her autoimmune condition, this could increase her chances for developing cervical cancer as a result of her HPV infection. That's why the colposcopy is important: it will help detect cellular abnormalities that could become cancerous later on and allow your daughter's doctor to deal with them before they become troublesome.

I hope that answers your question. I'll be available if you have additional concerns.

My best to your daughter...

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
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