Cervical ectropion, also referred to as cervical erosion, is when the glandular cells found inside the cervical canal are also found outside the cervix. This harmless, benign condition is more common than you might realize. Some women are born with this while others develop it as a result of hormonal changes. Young women who are taking oral contraceptives, pregnant, or going through adolescence are also more likely to develop cervical ectropion. If you have cervical ectropion, an OBGYN can provide you with the answers you need to manage this condition.
Are there symptoms?
Most of the time, this condition doesn’t cause any symptoms. Most women don’t even know they have it until they visit their gynecologist for their annual checkup. If you do have cervical ectropion you may notice,
- Spotting between periods
- Light discharge
- Discomfort during sex
You may also experience a little discomfort when undergoing a regular pelvic exam. We understand that pain with sex can be concerning. Spotting or breakthrough bleeding between periods or pain with intercourse could also be signs of an infection, fibroids, endometriosis, or other health problems, so it’s important to see your OBGYN for a proper diagnosis.
How is cervical ectropion treated?
If you aren’t experiencing symptoms, then treatment really isn’t necessary. In some cases, cervical ectropion may just go away on its own. Of course, heavy discharge, bleeding, or pain can be managed through cauterization (performed through heat, cold or silver nitrate), which removes the glandular cells from outside the cervix.
In most cases, this procedure is enough to get rid of this condition; however, it is possible for symptoms to return. If they do, your OBGYN may decide to simply repeat the procedure.
Does cervical ectropion increase my risk for cervical cancer?
Finding out that there are cellular changes within the cervix can be a little unnerving, but this condition is completely harmless. If you are pregnant this will not harm your unborn child and this cervical ectropion will not increase your risk for cervical cancer.
Do you have questions or concerns about cervical ectropion? Want to talk about your treatment options? If so, your OBGYN can help.