During your examination today the doctor or nurse specialist took a small biopsy (a tiny piece of tissue) about the size of a grain of rice from your cervix (neck of the womb). This will be looked at more closely in the laboratory to help us to diagnose abnormal cells and support and manage your care.

What to expect after the biopsy

You may have a discharge and even light bleeding after the biopsy. This is normal and can sometimes last for a few days but should not last more than 2 weeks.

You may also be aware of a brown/yellow discharge caused by the dyes used during the colposcopy examination and sometimes brown or black specks in your vaginal discharge.

Some patients experience discomfort similar to a period, taking simple pain relief such as paracetamol or ibuprofen will help to relieve this. Please follow the instructions inside the packet.

You may need to use a panty liner for the next 2 to 3 days but it is also safe to use tampons during this time. However, if the discharge continues to be heavy, has an unpleasant smell or you have a fever please contact your GP for advice.


Details of your results and the next appointment (if required) will be sent to you and your GP within 4 to 6 weeks. This letter will explain any abnormality found in your biopsy, along with information about any treatment or follow-up that you may need.

Abnormal cells may not be found in the biopsy. This is known as a normal result and depending on your previous history and age you will be recalled for age-appropriate cervical screening.

If abnormal cells are found, this is known as an abnormal result. It is not cancer but there is a risk that these cells could turn into cancer in the future if not treated or monitored.

The grade of abnormality is referred to as Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia, usually known as CIN. Please refer to leaflet GHPI0298 ‘The Colposcopy Clinic’ which was sent with your appointment letter, as this gives you more detailed information about CIN.

Contact information

If you have any questions about the biopsy or if you need advice, please contact the Colposcopy Helpline.


Please note we are unable to give out results over the phone.

Colposcopy Helpline

Tel: 0300 422 2385

This is an answerphone service. Your call will be returned between Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 5:00pm

Email: ghn-tr.colposcopyhelpline@nhs.net

If you require urgent medical advice/assistance outside of these hours, please contact either your GP or NHS 111.

NHS 111

Tel: 111


Tel: 0300 422 2914

Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 5:00pm

Email: ghn-tr.colposcopybookings@nhs.net

Further information


Website: www.gov.uk/phe/cervical-screening-leaflet


Website: www.nhs.uk/cervical

Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust

Website: www.jostrust.org.uk

Printable version of this page

Information following a cervical biopsy GHPI0788_08_23 Department: Gynaecology Review due: August 2026 PDF, 350.3 KB, 3 pages
Reference number GHPI0788_08_23
Department Gynaecology
Review due August 2026