Thursday, September 16, 2004

I Put My Finger in My Eye

At least I feel like putting my finger in my eye.

Good GOD! I cut way back on lozenges yesterday. I haven't had one today. I figure there is no sense in messing around with it anymore. I am not going to smoke anymore no matter what, so I'm just going to go ahead and go through the whole process all at once. Why put it off?

Holy crap this is hard. It's made me cry a few times already. I mean tears and bawling and snot. My official fall-back if it is too hard is lozenges, but I've avoided them so far today.

I had to go back to the doctor because my Pap from September 2nd came back "ASCUS." (Atypical Squamous Cells of Undetermined Significance.) They didn't have enough tissue left over to do the HPV test, so I had to go give them some more. Hooray! I shouldn't have HPV, because I did not have it when I was pregnant with Chris. I know I was tested for it then. Since I met Dennis, I've had three normal paps. I have a feeling this was just a bad test for some reason and the HPV will come back negative. I gather that around 60% of the time that is the case.

I will know when this test comes back in two to three weeks. If I do not have any HPV at all, then I just got a "bad Pap" for some reason or another. If I do have HPV, I will know if I have "not bad" or "bad" HPV. Apparently there are different kinds, and only some of them are associated with increased risk of cervical cancer.

From Dr. Paul Indman:
The Atypical Pap (ASCUS)
This is the category that drives women crazy! This means some cells that are slightly funny looking, but not abnormal enough to call dysplasia. (ASCUS stands for "atypical cells of undetermined significance.) This category could also be called "probably normal, but I want to keep a close eye on things." There is a tremendous variation between labs on how many pap smears come back with this reading, which corresponds to the old "Class 2" classification. Some labs will be very liberal in calling normal variations "atypical," which causes women to worry needlessly. Other labs have stricter criteria for this classification.

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