Advertisement
The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Read Now: TheBodyPRO.com Covers AIDS 2014
   
Ask the Experts About

AIDS-Related CancersAIDS-Related Cancers
           
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary


Shoud I have biopsy or a PAP smear of my butt?
Dec 23, 2001

I am hiv+ for over 13 years. Upon recent internal examination, my doctor has discovered that my rectum has evidence of hyperplasia and leukoplakia. He wants to do a couple of biopsies. Having had surgeries and excisions in this area before, i know from experience that they can be very painful and bothersome for a considerable time period. Should i be requesting a far less invasive procedure such as a PAP smear or is a biopsy the standard? what is the difference? is one better than the other? thanks for your help. Don

Response from Dr. Dezube

Dear Don:

You ask a great question-- which is better a PAP smear or a biopsy of your butt? A PAP smear is really a screening tool. With a PAP smear, your provider inserts a swab into your butt, removes the cells lining the area, and sends them for an analysis. This is very akin to the cervical PAP smear which has prevented many many women from dying of cervical cancer. If the PAP smear shows abnormal cells, i.e. pre-cancer cells, then the next step is to have someone look up you butt and take biopsies and treat any abnormalities appropriately.

In your case, you have already been diagnosed with areas of hyperplasia and leukoplasia. Unfortunately only a biopsy will tell you and your provider what lies beneath. Although you could have just a painless PAP smear done, you run the risk of having the PAP smear under-report a cancer.

So in short,

PAP smear-- best for screening. A PAP smear tells providers whom they should recommend for further evaluation.

Biopsy-- best for getting an accurate diagnosis.

Good luck! I agree that surgeries and excisions can be bothersome. Not having the surgeries and having to deal with the consquences (i.e., untreated cancer) can be even more bothersome.


Previous
Abnormal Gallium Scan- is it PCP pneumonia or is it from my chemotherapy? My doctor is a total jerk!
Next
my cousin has lost 150 pounds; Does he have HIV? What can I do?

  
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary


 
 
Advertisement




Q&A TERMS OF USE

This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither TheBody.com nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint

Advertisement