Unnecessary Pap Smears Discussion Forum

This post has been created to provide an additional forum for discussion, and is a continuation of the old Blogcritics’ Unnecessary Pap Smears discussion.  The original Blogcritics Unnecessary Pap Smears discussion had more than 10,000 comments, but the comments were deleted following changes to the Blogcritics’ site.

Fortunately, the comments from Blogcritics have since been recovered and are preserved here: http://unnecessarypapsmears.wordpress.com/2013/07/12/over-10000-lost-comments-on-unnecessary-pap-smears-find-a-home/   This post also provides a ‘part three’ continuation of the ‘part two’ discussion forum that exists on this site: https://forwomenseyesonly.com/2013/09/22/discussion-forum/

Thank you Alex for suggesting the addition of an open forum devoted to discussion on this blog.

1,585 comments

  1. Beth I totally agree. I’m fuming now because I needed an appoint urgently but had to wait ages as the only available appointments were with Dr Smear Test who hijacks my time with smear pressure. Finally had appointment with someone else signed off work on the spot going for xray tomorrow with suspected neck and shoulder nerve damage! So how could a smear have helped that?? Blergg

    • Yes. They claim that there is a doctor shortage and nursing shortage, and people have to wait a long time for urgent appointments, but they find all of this time for the pap crap and associated pressure for that and other screenings. Even when you get an appointment for an urgent matter, it’s hijacked with pap crap (whether you give in or not), then a second wait for the “urgent” matter – which has often cleared up by then or it’s gotten severe enough to send you to the hospital.

      Oh, but if there was only a way these people could be persuaded to see a doctor for an urgent matter before it became an emergency….

      In the US, it’s all good, because it all costs money payable to the physician’s group, hospital, and physician.

    • Kat, I’ve only just picked up on your comments. It’s a worry that in spite of the NHS being so strapped for cash, there’s nothing stopping the screening juggernaut, aka preventive healthcare, which is Matt Hancock’s pet project. I largely think it is because this arm of medicine is highly marketable, and has been largely privatised already, especially in London, although always under the NHS logo. I’ve noticed a lot of hospitals offering evening drop-in services, as well as some GP surgeries.

  2. Beth it’s not good is it? I’m just praying there’s no lasting damage with my neck and shoulder. It’s horrendously painful. Bit what’s scarier is the women who manage illnesses like asthma and diabetes themselves with drugs from the Internet because they can’t face the pap crap

    • I hope your neck and shoulder recover fully and SOON. I’m sorry you’re in so much pain. 😦

      It has crossed my mind to “manage” my diabetes and hypothyroid on my own. I don’t trust most of the online pharmacies – which actually broker their sales through the Philippines, often with counterfeit drugs originating in China or other countries with no protections for such things as patents. I understand some people have had good results from some of them though.Eating boiled chicken necks would get me some thyroid hormone, and I would have to eat MUCH less to keep my blood sugar in check without medications.

      Honestly – should anyone have to choose being triggered through a year or periodic flashbacks as the “price” to get medical treatment for an actual condition for that year – only to be repeated the next year. Especially when I have “access” through a government-funded program? Even if I accept that my risk for coming up with CC this year is 0.0056%, whereas being retriggered on rape/sexual abuse has an 8% rate for successful suicide…. hmmm, let me think.

      Do you think for one second that I’m going to even consider the notion of colposcopy/”punch biopsy” (tearing off hunks of my cervix (with clitoral nerves, no less! and without anesthesia) or “cone biopsy” (with even more risks, including to pelvic and vagus nerves!)

      Holding my medical treatment hostage to “agreeing” to such, or even implying that, is not much different than holding a knife to someone’s throat, and demanding sexual access implying they will slit her throat if they don’t. The second situation is considered a violent act, and although someone could theoretically say, “No sex for you. Go ahead and stab me!”, it’s hardly “consent”. It’s rape. It’s also rape when it’s done via pure coercion (you will permit me to penetrate your vagina and/or anus or I’ll refuse to treat you for life-limiting conditions). If a plumber refused me their professional services unless I offered myself to them sexually, that too would be rape, even though I won’t die from broken plumbing. What gives doctors a pass on this?

      • Know this. I take my copy of the Trovagene Urine Based HPV test I completed in 2015 which is 93% accurate vs pap at 50%. I give that to my doctor proving I’m “clean” and so is my husband. I have not been challenged into having a pap. It’s not even discussed. I recently consulted with an MD out of town and on first visit didn’t challenge me either.
        Second, take a printout of the Delphi Screener and offer to do that instead.
        Third, via TRUSCREEN FAQ I got a printout of their ad. It shows a pic of the device and a statement under which says, “Pap tests are subjective and vary significantly–only giving approximately 50% accuracy.
        After that?

        Confront them with the lack of Full Informed Consent for them not informing you of the above.

        Offer to take one of the alternatives.

        Go to youtube videos or to a Medical Library and download what is said re “felt pain” during pap, and especially during colposcopies. Inform doc that the “patient friendly” brushes for colposcopy have hidden among the nylon bristles steel and/or brass bristles. Tell them that IF you do have HPV it’s a guarantee that using invasive instruments on you will force an infection which you won’t be able to fight off.

        Would you clean off a scraped knee with a popsicle stick? That’s unsterilized to boot?

        Confront them re pain. Your cervix is much like the head on a penis. The nerves connect to S2 and above. That means the cervix is extremely innervated and does feel and transmit pain. Make Dr perform a nerve block. If he refuses then make a giant fuss. Why give in?

        If you prove the test is only 50% accurate then you prove the doc has nothing to stand on. And that for a test that exposes you to worse (if virus is present the scrape puts it there to stay as said which can also be looked up).

        Explain that you won’t consent to the horrible pain of having your cervix ripped to pieces. Take your sig other along for support. Do not give in.

        Do not buy into the bullying lecture that “you’ll die IF…” It’s bullshit. Certainly if there was a terrible threat there would be a “real” test not the bogus pap.

        Let me know how it goes.

      • Yes. In SouthernCA.
        You may credit my husband for this. Been married 31yrs. He pretty much demanded to go with me to my then-pap exam the second year we were dating.
        So I decided to take him on threat he’d likely break up with me later on. He wanted me to go to his doctors with him as well as going with me. Reason? He felt patients needed an advocate to help deal with the doctor’s BS and that also as a “witness.” And to prevent molest when we’re undressed.
        So I took him. I had Kaiser back then.
        The physician assistant, male, I had that day asked a LOT of inappropriate questions. He kept going on as to whether we invited or had multiple partners. I mean, he asked and repeated the same specific questions about both men and women. Until finally my future hubby asked “We said we’re monogamous. What don’t you understand about that?” Then the questions stopped.
        The exam was ok. He actually warmed up the plastic speculum at the sink first.
        But very creepy.
        It’s because of that, and that fact that his ex-best friend from high school (father baptist preacher) has become a pervert anesthesiologist now practicing in VA. That guy gets off on naked “trimmed” red heads. He married one. His first marriage however, bombed as she (another doctor in AL) cheated.
        When he stayed with us during his residency he had sex with a neighbor. She began complaining about his lack of talent and even said, “…he did nothing.”
        When my husband tried talking to him re sex he refused to listen.
        Imagine that; a doctor who knows all about anatomy but cannot get a woman to orgasm if his life depended upon it… Like a teen who builds his own car but never learns to drive.
        This guy lied to us about nearly everything we ever asked him. Especially about the pap exam.
        My husband got me the hell away from him too.
        We should thank the ex best friend. In some strange way, he got my husband to research pap and other medical things.
        It is how I got to use the Trovagene Urine Based HPV exam. And my husband ordered my doctor then to order it for me.
        This site has been extremely helpful to us.
        It’s a pleasure to share what helped us.
        WE MUST STOP THE ABUSE!
        Look up what we say. Understand it. Print it (edited by moderator)

      • I’ve told and shown my (female) doc that paps are less than 50% accurate. She just huffed and disagreed, and said, “They are VERY accurate”. She also disagreed that they were painful. My last one 23 years ago was very painful, because those nitwits first stuck the speculum in my urethra (stretched and damaged from some extreme catheterization), then the same morons couldn’t find my cervix! Anyway, in the last appointment with my “regular” doc, in a few minutes, she accepted my firm “NO” and went on.

        Last year, I had the doc switched out with <1 day notice with a male doc because "she's still not back from maternity leave". There was no amount of anything that could get this doc off of "I need to (do all of these things) and give you a pap test RIGHT NOW, implying strongly that I would not get treatment for diabetes if I refused. I still refused, and I got my prescriptions for the diabetes needs. Now I'm due again… or no diabetes treatment. 😦 He wasted the appointment time so I couldn't talk about something that could be a real problem.

        This time, I am going to confront her (or whoever I get this time) with information that they are not "very accurate" (and be prepared that it's "something on the internet" when it comes from a recognized medical journal, plus I am not going to consent to having my cervix ripped apart – and I expect even harder insistence that I have that if or when it's positive.

        My SO and I accompany one another to (almost) all medical appointments – partly to help remember what was said, partly to keep from having something sprung on us without our consent.

        BTW, I said "almost" because very occasionally one of us will have an appointment without the other. Most recently, it was an appointment with my dental hygienist, and he was sick with something flu-like, which I'd gotten over. She was surprised to see me alone, but at the same time, I don't expect her to do anything untoward. Had that been a medical appointment, I would have cancelled saying *I* was sick.

      • What I said re Omega 3 is very important to lowering inflammatory conditions in body. Get shelled hemp seed and add it to nearly everything you can.
        You said you live in UK?
        Hope what I said educates and helps. If you can use it to stand up for yourself successfully as we have then all the time invested was well worth it.

      • How can your female doctor presume to know how a pap feels for you and others? The arrogance. They tell themselves what they want to believe to justify their unconscionable behavior, i.e. not caring about the patient’s pain or consent and putting screening targets first.

      • To understand them is to realize how they are trained.
        Not only do they buy into this BS themselves; they learn how to sell it to us.
        They are taught we are too stupid to decide for ourselves. So that’s how “decision-sharing” came into the exam room. No longer are we given Full Informed Consent.
        That’s the problem.

      • @Rose2: “How can your female doctor presume to know how a pap feels for you and others?”

        My.mom.had a UTI last year,and when she went to the doctor, the female doctor she didn’t believe my mom. knew where the pain was. She wanted to know how mom knew she had a UTI, mom said it was because of where the pain is, then sneered that shed be the judge, then was stunned that yes,the pain was exactly where my.mom.said it was.

        She also was fascinated aged by things my mom read on the internet about how UTIs work, as it turns out she knows very little about them.

        Disappeared battery of tests on my.mom because apparently being a fidgeter is an indication of a myriad of Very Bad Things ToFear, plus a hysterectomy due to her age. My mom…will not be doing any of that and was disgusted at the opportunism.

      • I’ve had a lot of dismissive doctors and nurses. I’ve had a few good ones along the way.

        Most of them, so it seems, seem to think that people cannot feel their own body. I’ve had a nurse roughly rip out a catheter, and when I complained, “That does not hurt! You have no nerves down there!” I’ve had the same thing said about my cervix (as Kinsey claimed 70 years ago). I was told that I could not feel a tear in my rectum, but I got the doc to humor me and examine it, and yes, sure enough. Then I got a lecture about anal sex! (That wasn’t the cause, and the damage caused by anal sex was not done with my consent.) That doesn’t seem to matter either. I’ve had catheters installed when I was in an operating room for emergency surgery after I’d refused it, then traumatically removed. The records were evidently scrubbed to get rid of the catheterization, as they didn’t want to pay for the repair… but I never got it dealt with by a doctor – I couldn’t face the thought – but eventually got it to heal with kegels and a stainless-steel barbell to provide resistance for kegel exercises.

        My MIL has a wild theory, that the more I see and hear appears to be correct: Medical personnel come from another planet, and that alien race has no feeling anywhere inside their bodies. I cannot take this wild theory seriously, but just how much does reading and studying falsehoods that “there are no nerves” take away from a person being able to actually FEEL anything? Especially when there are genuine articles written by neurologists and physiologists describing where and how nerves are, what they do, and how they work.

        When I read about how some women go through what is described as “birth rape”, it seems clear that they have utterly no empathy.

      • @Demonhype They act so amazed when patients are aware that they have a common infection or some other issue that can be readily self diagnosed based on symptoms. It really reinforces my belief that a lot of doctors see the body as a domain that they have special rights to above and beyond the rights of the individual. It’s so thoroughly objectifying. I hope your mom is okay now and good on her for resisting the pressure. All women past reproductive age are at risk of having their female organs essentially harvested. Those pesky female organs only cause problems in the minds of medicine. Makes it easy to see how “wandering womb” and the like could have been so easily accepted by physicians. Our reproductive organs are essentially seen as accessories once childbearing is over.

      • I already have been using Omega-3s for many years.

        I live in the US. So, not only is medical care held hostage to this nonsense, I’m paying by the minute for their attempts to coerce me. It can also be looked at as a form of bill-padding and (attempted) upselling. Insurance companies are not too happy with other such things when they happen.

        I have successfully resisted these horrible examinations for around 23 years now. I mainly did that by avoiding medical care. However, I can no longer do so.

        Holding one’s medical treatment hostage to an invasive test, particularly one which has nothing to do with the condition at hand is unethical, and probably illegal. I have found a case involving the Title IX program and planned parenthood, where the government withheld payment for these tests which are unnecessary to get birth control pills. The court said it put an “undue burden” on women. Thus, it is also an undue burden to require them in order to get unrelated medical treatment. Indeed, requiring an unrelated invasive test to receive medical treatment is illegal, violates consent, bodily autonomy.

        I feel that I can go in THIS YEAR and (hopefully) see my regular doctor again. I will refuse to see that (expletive) who planned what amounts to rape by coercion last year.

      • Can you get me any of that info re the Title IX case? I’d love to have that.
        Something to shove back in the faces of nurse bullies who claim that doc will go to jail if I don’t have pap. As if giving me The Pill or HRT w/o pap will get the doc felony charges.
        Have any of you heard that one?
        These same nurses will then whine about how women elsewhere are treated disrespectfully & poorly.

      • Cat & Mouse: I’ve looked, and cannot find that case. I thought I had left a link in my pap refusal document, but it’s not there.

        I did find a statement/recommendation from the ACOG (seldom our friend!) that spells out that pelvic exams, cervical or breast cancer screenings are NOT recommended to be a requirement to access contraception. https://www.acog.org/Clinical-Guidance-and-Publications/Committee-Opinions/Committee-on-Gynecologic-Practice/Access-to-Hormonal-Contraception?IsMobileSet=false Their justification is that not using contraception, and risking pregnancy, is far riskier than forgoing the tests.

        Bodily autonomy comes to mind, as well as the generally recognized right to health care. The patient’s bill of rights, available visibly in most clinics, ensures your right to refuse any treatment. This is a legal statement, and is not mere decoration. There are State laws, and some federal laws that can come into play on this too.

  3. Cat and Mouse I think it’s general wear and tear as I do an active physical job and I’m mid 50’s bit doc noticed my shaking hans and twitching finger…
    It’s really painful too.
    I’m a trade union Rep and after kicking off at work they made modification which will help too. We just have a really toxic sickness absence policy. Literally told your an inconvenience and you can’t have any more time off for x amount of time. Problem is there’s always tons going round in a school lol!!

    • Do you live in US? Or Canada or UK?
      Have you heard of chronic regional pain syndrome or Reflex Sympathetic Sympathetic Syndrome?
      I have that. In 1997 I got to a very good pain doctor who Dx’d it and then pointed us toward lots of literature.
      Do not ever take antidepressants nor shit like gabapenten. The latter short circuits your nervous system. The first has a black box warning against violence. The first two weeks on or off your propensity to attack self or others is very high. You’ll either find religion or a long prison sentence. All the mass murderers here who later had “lights on but nobody home” mug shots were on these. Makes me wonder what Liberal therapists did to point them in the bad direction. Prophecy? Well, the migrant hassles certainly are. I could go on…
      It’s a miracle, truly, gift from God that I was diagnosed properly and that we also got out of the pap mess.
      I have a book re fibromyalgia and chronic pain. it covers RSD as well. I just loaned it out but will get the name and post it here. I agree with everything in the book except antidepressants, BS meds like gabapenten, and in heavy use of NSIDS.
      Problem with new DEA narcotic dosing? Chronic pain sufferers get same doses as those just injured. No more no exceptions. Seriously, I’d like to make everybody at DEA suffer what I have for one hour. That’s all the men could endure. Then let’s see their attitude. I was rated at 1:40,000 addiction potential.
      Why didn’t I have problems? Why didn’t I abuse? Because I had the right doctor who believed me—and most of all—I was prescribed brand name meds. Not the generic BS that doesn’t work!!
      Generics are supposed to be 90-105% of brand spec for all categories. How it dissolves, how long it works, how well it relieves pain.
      I can tell you from experiences that these generics, especially those by Mellonkropdt Pharma, are pure placebo junk!! I need a shoulder total joint replacement plus knee TJR. My pain is proven, documented over years by multiple doctors, and very real. Generics don’t work. They don’t relieve pain more than 50% and they don’t last more than 5 hours instead 8-12 as advertised.
      Pain effects the brain. If you’re never out of pain, you are never able to rest. You are in constant inflammatory state. So is it such a surprise that people take more meds? And then labeled freaks and addicts…
      Order your doctor to perform a “prior authorization” to try and get you brand meds.
      If you have Kaiser get the hell away from it. Before they kill you. After all, you cost those self centered docs their yearly bonus’. My pleasure in life would be subjecting doctors to pain and then giving them generic meds while denying their symptoms. Let’s see how they deal with it…
      Get off meat. If the animal has a bad day and secrets stress hormones..well that’s what you’re eating.
      Organic milk with DHA algal oil.
      Flood your body with omega-3 oils like hemp, coconut, avocado, grape seed, or canola. The oils must be cold pressed and cold processed. No solvent extraction. This will serve to reduce inflammation internally. Reduce sugar intake. The body under stress hogs sugar. BTW we use that oil on everything. We drink it. My cholesterol is 129 and I’m 75 pounds overweight.
      Get on medical marijuana. Do not smoke. Vaporize it. Research flowers. Pulsar makes good cheap vaporizers. Ooze has the Draught; cheap works very well and we love it. Great factory support. Avoid Pax. Pax=expensive pain in the ass. DaVinci is ok but costly.
      Those on MM usually require 50% less narcotics. I cut my needs 80%. My pain doc now approves.
      MM helps migraines, pain, sleep, and even getting stuff done during the day. Know your strains.
      Ooze sells scales so you can make your own cannaoil too. Do not use butter unless grass fed/organic.
      Vegetarians and vegans live longer and have better sex lives.
      Use Endoca CBD/CBDa oil. Begin with 3 drops morning and evening plus when you need more. Then taper after a month to what you need. This $100 investment for 30ml is the best thing you can do. Use this and you won’t need so much narcotic.
      Marijuana flower is wonderful. Research it through Leafly, Allbud, and Maryjane etc. I wish I’d gotten on it earlier.
      You can go online and find the strains that might work for you. Then go out and buy them; try them. If they smell good to your nose they’ll probably work well. And MM is great for sex too. Especially edibles. Protabs (brand) are very effective.
      Did you know MM (THCv) helps you lose weight?
      Get back to me.
      PS My husband is writing this for me. I’m pretty screwed up. He is my caregiver.
      Costco sells a food-based vitamin. Be sure to have Vit C, calcium, magnesium, zinc. Taurine will help energy. Soy lecithin, DHA algal oil for brain (look them up)! L-lysine for tissue regeneration. L-argenine for sex and heart (believe me…oh you will both “arrive” not just come). And I believe in HRT so long as you have progesterone to oppose estrogen. And you include testosterone. How is your thyroid? TSH is not a good indicator if you still have symptoms. Beware of Epstein-Barr Virus. Hytrin (terazozin Sandoz brand generic ONLY) works as vasodilator which helps your hands keep warm and helps pain. Cadista brand is useless. If your pharmacy won’t order you a brand that works contact their district manager and have a talk. Walmart used to be a good pharmacy but now only stocks cheap shit; refusing to stock anything that’s useful.
      Did you know law enforcement and pharmacists see brand name meds as having more street value? What does that tell you?

  4. Lots to think about Cat and Mouse. I’m in the UK. I’ll do some reading up on all this! I’m very very picky aleady re: prescription drugs and recently lowered my dangerously high BP myself via diet and exercise alone.
    I lover this site so many women from all over just getting together and supporting each other!!

  5. Smear tests have been blamed for a lot but I just read a piece in the Daily Mirror a 61 yr old woman is up in arms the NHS won’t pay £1000 a month for hemp suppositories to help her. She has chronic genital arousal syndrome ( she keeps having orgasms in everyday life when not having sex?) And blames a botched smear test for this. …

    • I looked up the functions of the pudendal nerve, it’s functions, and what happens when it is damaged. Chronic genital arousal may be one thing, but more common is genital anesthesia (you no longer feel your genitalia), as well as incontinence.

      There are other nerves in that general area which are more commonly damaged by such follow-on tests as LEEP or LEETZ. Pelvic, vagus, and hypogastric. These all have various functions, including feeling your feelings, regulating your heart and breathing, immune system function, and inflamation.

      No, it seems there is no end to the damage caused by this vile tests.See https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fimmu.2017.01452/full for more details.

      If someone were penetrating you with some sort of sexual toy, and they did it roughly and/or without lube, you would demand they stop. Rarely is someone damaged in this way – even with some extreme BDSM practices. Yet, the medics do this in a rough enough manner, not paying attention to screams or damands to STOP such that these nerves are damaged with some regularity.

      Pulling off parts of my cervix, with approximately the same number of nerve endings as are in the end of an intact male penis, and without anesthesia, is an absolute hard no.

    • Honestly, I really do think doctors and nurses see smears and the ensuing treatment, as either punishing, or holding women accountable, for having sex.

      • Absolutely. Its like they’re thinking “Go ahead and be a bad girl and have sex, but in exchange you’re going to have to undergo humiliating exams and potentially unnecessary painful and debilitating procedures that will, rather than enhance your health, undermine it.”

    • Thanks for this: Professor Archie Cochrane wrote: ‘I remember giving a lecture in Cardiff on screening in 1967 into which I introduced the (as I thought) innocuous phrase “I know of no hard evidence, at present, that cervical smears are effective”. To my surprise I was pilloried in the local Welsh press, who quoted many anonymous colleagues who thought me a “dangerous heretic” and I received many abusive letters, some from colleagues.’ Cochrane (1972): 26–7; see also Bryder (2008); note 44. For a review of screening procedures, see Cochrane and Holland (1971); Wilson et al. (1971); Macgregor and Teper (1974)

    • This group of people are fanatically pro-screening and still driving the programme today in the UK. Peto was the one who came up with the 5,000 lives saved per year figure which is regularly trotted out on all the NHS adverts. This figure got instant criticism from other European countries at the time as being wildly too high and since then Sasieni has done further research putting that figure at about 1700.

      It is quite obvious from reading this that the whole thing was one huge experiment on women, and nobody really knew what they were doing. They started these screening tests with little idea of the cause and development of this cancer and everyone was forced into this experiment. They assumed complete ownership of our bodies. It was all implemented without the slightest heed for informed consent, which sadly they got away with at the time. It is quite clearly stated that all women were to be forced into going, to de-stigmatise the test, as pointing the finger at a few, would mean no-one would attend. It was quite deliberate that real information about the test was to be withheld to prevent women making an informed choice to disassociate themselves from the rest, and they did everything they could to prevent this. They have no morals or regard for human rights.

      The comments on page 67, show how they congratulate themselves on terrorising women into attending by getting a TV soap character to die of the disease. They find it amusing that women are terrorised into attending and accept this as normal behaviour in healthcare. Thank goodness some of them are already dead.

      • Consent itself was viewed as irrelevant for women, coercion was the norm, the consult for the Pill is still used to push, force or mislead women into testing. The AMA and others will continue to lie to keep the Pill on script, if that ever changes, many more women will ditch screening. (and they know it)

        It’s interesting that on some topics today, if you don’t have a certain viewpoint, you’re abused…there’s no counter argument, they’re right, you’re wrong…I think one of the first examples of this mob intimidation was cervical screening. Hysteria and moral superiority reigned, it silenced most women who had concerns about screening or who simply wanted more information.

        This program represents a huge black cloud, it destroyed the health and well being of countless numbers of women…the powers that be decided to do what they wanted to do with our bodies to promote their own agendas…and they got away with it.
        This was never about women’s healthcare…
        I think the dysfunctional and sexist/misogynistic attitudes in medicine that framed, promoted and protected this abuse are still in medicine, they no longer hold absolute power but there’s still work to do, to flush them out and challenge them…force change.
        There’s no doubt in my mind, our program only changed because more and more women were aware it was outdated, excessive and harmful. So women have forced change…

      • Elizabeth – I think this programme might have sprung from the beginnings of the sexual revolution, and initiated by pervasive misogyny and paternalism in medicine that militant feminists were quite frankly, too stupid and naive to recognise.

        I see it as a way to exercise control. You have your sexual freedom, but there is a price to pay for that. In return for your contraceptive access, you will be expected to have regular exams seeing as you’re “sexually active” now.

        Strange enough, many women in medicine – probably affected by internalised misogyny – also seem to have adopted these attitudes, and they still, largely persist.

        It’s the same sort of attitudes you see with pregnancy and the focus and emphasis on natural childbirth at all costs, and breastfeeding (even when the mother cannot or is struggling to do so).

        Like all these issues, there is an element of “putting women in their place”, and I think that view certainly applies in respect of screening.

        I was reading a few articles on the Daily Mail a few days ago. One was on abortion.

        Whatever one’s view on it, there were comments from women who had endured traumatic experiences and they were being villified by posters whose usernames regularly feature in the screening articles.

        It’s interesting that screening seems to have been turned into a “right-wing” issue, with newer attempts to hijack it by the “empowerment” brigade.

        The screening forces want it to be so controversial that you cannot debate the disadvantages of it in public. It’s quite Gestapo-esque.

        As you say, there’s still a lot of work to be done to challenge attitudes (including female ones).

        I’ve seen newer anti-screening comments that challenge the pro-screeners’ actual knowledge of screening and out them for their lack of understanding. I reckon that’s a great tact as this is how pro-screeners dealt with “defaulters” for years!

  6. Piece in the BBC News today: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-51121305

    The ignorance continues. Is it surprising she has a name called Mercedes? Sorry, I’m being derogatory lol.

    Also two pieces in the Health section of the Daily Mail. NHS Professor claims that the brilliant new primary HPV screening will make cervical cancer extinct (he’s forgotten about adenocarinomas, the fact that the NHS were light years behind in testing for it, and that a self-test could be used).

    • Another great non-story from Jo’s Tosh. 88% of 25-35 year olds said HPV didn’t make them feel dirty, and 95% of over 55 year olds said it didn’t. This is a news story?

  7. I have finally received confirmation of my Opt-Out from cervical screening using the PCSE form that I sent by email to my GP surgery! Form can be obtained from here:

    https://www.mysurgerywebsite.co.uk/website/G82115/files/smear%20disclaimer.pdf

    It replaces the original form CSAS which is what they still direct you to on the PHE site!

    Only time will tell if I receive any more but at least I got acknowledgement after the third request in writing. If you want to use it then ensure you email it directly to your GP Surgery, they usually have a general enquiries email address.

    • Many congratulations on your new life, where you own your own body! Keep us informed how you get on. It would be interesting to know if your surgery is one of those which sends you a 5 yearly reminder of your opt-out status (in other words continuing reminders under another name).

    • Honestly, I would cross out or put a line through the sentence on the form that says ‘I have read and understood the cervical screening leaflet’. What utter cheek! Patronising women to the extreme. As if the holy leaflet is the only place you should get your information from, sheesh…

      They really don’t want us to use our brains, do they? I suppose we’re all meant to be good little women and judiciously read the leaflet as instructed.

      Me? I’d make a paper aeroplane out of it!!!

      • Ozphoenix in my LAST “invitation ” in 2025 just before I opted out it read we have sent you a leaflet cervical screening helping you decide. We advise you read this before coming for the test!! So we were to read it and then decide…to have the test!! Paper aeroplane? Nah. I’d use it to scoop up my cats poo from his tray…

      • You use it to scoop up cat poop?
        Interesting.
        We get a local healthcare newsletter. Front page has pap demands (recommendations).
        We put it under the litter box to catch cling-ons.

      • Awwwweeesssooommee!!! We should start a hint-of-the-day to go in these womens newsletters. Best uses for useless pap crap letter stuff!

        If you make a paper hat with it and line it with foil, it keeps the aliens at bay. You’ll need two reminder letters if you want to cover your behind against anal probes tho.

  8. Ada I opted out in 2015 . So I’d be “due” an “invitation ” in a couple months of I’d stayed on the lost. I’ll let you all know of I get a reminder. Should I do so I will b sending them a snotty email….

    • I opted out in 2003, and, to be fair, never had any bother since, but I think as more and more women have found that opt-out letter, and also they are forced to legally admit it exists and offer this option, I think they’ve got worried too many are opting out and they’d better catch them some other way. It would be very interesting to see if they did contact you again. My GP and the nurse who got me at that planned assault in 1997 have since retired, although GP has returned part-time in a locum role continuing the “care” of a few unlucky individuals. Also, a new arrangement at our surgery – all patients now re-allocated to GPs according to surname. This is going to be interesting if I have to go for anything.

      • Ada even after I opted out Dr Smear Test still kept on hassling me about it. I dealt with it by just using the walk in for 2 years then when I needed a regular doc for ongoing problems I just avoided Dr Smear Test as I did over my current neck and shoulder pain. Dr Smear Test use to be my named regular GP: Looking online now he’s bumped me and I have a new named GP who to be fair has never pressed me . Nor have the other docs or the nurses. Funny but screening came up with the woman when I refused HRT; asked why I wouldn’t consider it I said no proof it’s safe and I’m not preared to start screening. Why don’t you screen? She asked did I find it too painful? I explained; for cervical and breast. She couldn’t argue with anything and just said she could see my reasoning!!

  9. New piece I daily fail singing the praises of HPV jab. It’s nearly perfect and about 98% effective. I’m sure all the girls with serious side effects would agree lol….

  10. New again in the daily fail…Apparently rates of CC are increasing in younger women by 54%. Of course embarrassment is blamed. So what happened to the all singing and dancing miracle vaccine?

    • I can’t find that article in the rabid pro-screening right-wing Daily Mail. Can’t find it on the Health section of BBC News either. Wonder if it’s been pulled lol?! 😂

  11. Oh my ladies I’m wetting myself laughing! ANOTHER DM piece HPV vaccine row as Govt says it will almost eradicate risk of CC but researchers say evidence is insufficient lol….

    • Well of course the government couldn’t admit the vaccine was just an experiment, considering all the money they’ve spent on it. Same goes for breast & cervical screening, really. Little more than vanity projects, introduced by clueless politicians eager to please the vested interests and win the pink vote. Evidence, who needs it? Even if it fails, the statistics can always be manipulated to make it appear as if their expensive & harmful programme is highly successful and worth every penny, right?

  12. Hi, I’ve recently had a private appointment with a gynaecologist and she tried to push the smear test on me. When I said no and gave my reasons, she accused me of getting my information from dubious sources like mass media! (I know). I’d like to ask this community for a list of the top 5-10 peer reviewed medical journal articles you would use to support your arguments against having the smear test. Thanks!

    • Hi there,
      As Ada has indicated, trying to support a case against screening using articles in medical journals can be challenging. The BMJ is a bit of an exception. This article published in 2016 might help: https://www.bmj.com/content/352/bmj.h6080 although not specific to cervical cancer it does highlight how cancer screening in general fails to reduce overall mortality, and can actually increase mortality.
      There are many comments and posts on this site that contain links and information to support a case against screening, including this post: https://forwomenseyesonly.com/2014/04/19/top-five-reasons-for-opting-of-pap-tests/ “References and Education” linked on the top of this site might help, although trying to convince a gynecologist to see things differently could be a long process. I hope it goes well for you!

    • You’re the customer, you call the shots. And if you don’t want a medical procedure, you have the absolute right to refuse without having to explain yourself. If your doctor is won’t respect your wishes, I doubt she’ll take any notice of any evidence you present to her. Some doctors are just plain ignorant, some have a god complex, and some push the well woman bullshit out of pure greed. Women’s health is a billion dollar industry – the more unreliable a test is, the more money they can make from it.

    • One of the most notable studies on cervical screening was that of Professor Angela Raffle and Bristol University (2003).
      Bear in mind though that their study focused on the old conventional screening for “abnormalities” rather than the primary HPV screening that was only rolled out last month.

      Nevertheless, I’m sure it was this study that revealed that only 5% of CIN 2 will progress to cervical cancer, and 12% of CIN 3 would progress.
      A more recent Dutch study by Vink et al (2013) found that 1.6% of CIN 3 would advance to cancer within 10 years, and 12% of CIN 3 would advance within 20 years.

      You can reference these studies as support, but your doctor is likely to say, “Well, we use primary HPV screening now”.

      In that case, you can tell her that there are self-testing kits available that test for the presence of HPV.
      These tests are actually used as part of the national screening programmes in Australia and the Netherlands.

      However, should you wish, you may be able to purchase one online. Google the “Delphi Screener”.
      I am not sure if you can purchase Trovagene online, but that is said to have an accuracy rate of 93%.

      You could tell your doctor (should you wish to do so), that you will self-test for HPV and you don’t wish to be part of the national screening programme. End of conversation.

      I often find that nurses and doctors try to engage women in long, drawn out conversations, so that they can “persuade” you, so I find that the best way to deal with them is to give them a very brief and firm answer that leaves them no leeway to carry on the conversation.
      I have found that saying, “I have made an informed decision not to screen” has largely worked. Be prepared to stand your ground and be firm and make it clear that you will not consent to these practices. If they persist, you could try saying something like, “I’ve made my decision. Can we move on please”.

      It may be daunting but in the end, they cannot force you to do anything if you are clear and firm.

      Good luck.

      • Yes I second AQ. My doctor kept pushing smears at me even after I’d officially opted out. All I kept saying was I opted out I signed a disclaimer. After half a dozen repetitions and silence from myself until he tried again…No ? You STILL don’t want to have a smear test? ? He admitted defeat and moved on. I make a point now of never booking to see this person though just in case!!

    • I had an appointment last year, where my regular doctor was swapped for a young resident, who pushed HARD for screening – leaving me in a set of flashbacks now for almost a year. In the mean time, worked to find better ways to resist. There is the “I’m paying for this by the minute. There are other things I’d like to discuss in this consult”, remembering (in the US) that I’m the customer. “I do not consent to this discussion. Let’s move on.” The accusation is that you’ve been “reading stuff on the Internet” is part of it. Reading scholarly papers is another. You can find scholarly papers that both support and refute the benefits of screening. They’ve got better access, so you will probably lose with that – even if you DO know how to read them, and understand things like “p values”. I was once given one with good rhetoric, but it had a p value of 3! That means that it was a statistical fluke!

      One way I intend to use this time, as I know what the “follow on” tests are if it’s positive – colposcopy & biopsy and LEEP/LEETZ. I find both of those reprehensible, and will refuse them. I also will not consent to a hysterectomy nor will I consent to chemotherapy or radiation therapy (via an advance directive). So….. if I am not going to take any action from a positive result, it’s got no potential of benefit. Even if they determine I have cancer (outright!), all it gives is lead time bias – as in, it gives me more time to know I’m a cancer patient, live as a cancer patient. It detracts from quality of life for the lifetime I’ve got left.

      I had a career in quality assurance. One of the big things there is if you find a problem, and do not intend to fix it or take other action on it, you’re wasting your time and money by performing that test.

      If you’re in the US, cervical screening IS big business. Not just a mere billion dollars per year, but $2 billion on the screening and associated costs of medical appointment to collect samples! Throw in the follow-on treatments for positive results, and that adds another $20 billion per year! This is a huge business!

  13. Anything by Petr Skrabanek and his colleague James McCormack, but both are now dead. Skrabanek died of an agressive prostate cancer about 2005 and McCormack more recently but both were very outspoken about cancer screening programmes. There will be no research against smear testing, because no-one would pay for such research to be done. It is only a few brave individuals raising their heads above the parapet, speaking against the injustice and cost of it all. For me it is simply knowing my true odds of getting this disease and making a personal decision based on that. A few Birmingham professors issued a letter to a journal having worked out the true odds over a woman’s lifetime. Can’t find a link to it now, but realising the odds are so remote, I can’t understand why any woman would put herself through this test for such a miniscule risk.
    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://jme.bmj.com/content/medethics/16/4/187.full.pdf&ved=2ahUKEwiVld_DpJjnAhWVr3EKHSYEAHUQFjAAegQIBhAB&usg=AOvVaw2WE3hScJ-g6OGVj-Sj0Q9r

  14. Yesterday, there was apparently an article stating that cervical cancer in the under 30 age bracket is up by 54%.

    I can no longer see these articles.

    Someone mentioned a potential link with the spike in cases and the HPV vaccine.

    I wonder if therefore, the articles have been pulled?!

  15. AQ…I’m useless at posting links but I just googled daily mail cervical screening health on my smartphone and 3 articled came up! The one the jab is near perfect then the one the jab isn’t perfect also the 54% rise in cases? Try on your phone ? Or similar device?

    • I think they are available… but I think they may have been pulled from the headlines of the Daily Mail, Guardian and BBC News health sections, because I looked today and yesterday on the Health headlines and they weren’t featured there. Unusual, because they all love a smear story usually!

      • My bad – I’ve found it. Lower down in the health headlines section.

        Curiously, when I read reasons for not going, they quoted 4 in 10 embarassed; 2 in 10 worried it might hurt; other reasons were also cited, including, “women saying that they didn’t think the level of risk applied to them”.

        Is this the DM’s way of finally acknowledging informed consent?!

        Also, as Kiwi points out, the 54% increase does not tell us anything in absolute terms.
        And didn’t this age group receive the vaccine??

    • https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/cervical-cancer-screening-hpv-vaccination-young-women-a9295291.html

      Kat, I’ve been finding a lot more stuff online on the vaccine not being nearly as effective as they first thought. Peter Gøetzsche was right that the Cochrane Review on HPV vaccination was flawed, and was rushed through by the drugs companies. I believe it says in the front of this review that half of HPV trials remain secret and undisclosed by drug companies. It appears it’s a similar story to the breast screening one – stops CIN1, but somehow the aggressive adenocarcinomas remain unstoppable.

      • The HPV vaccine wasn’t designed to do anything re adenocarcinomas. These grow from deep within. And pap is clueless even moreso as it cannot detect these–even when they grow like shrooms on the cervix’ surface.
        The computer algorithm used for the computer to read the pap scrape slide isn’t written to include that type of cell. The computer won’t even recognize the cell. It can’t.
        Nice looking cat on your avatar.
        Here’s one for you. I had to get a vaginal ultrasound. This place welcomed my husband no problem. So as it goes he gets to talking to the tech about the BS that pap is.
        The older woman said that she “will cling to my beliefs.” There you go. The dumb, head in a brown paper bag mindset is alive and well. That’s what keeps doctors in business doing pap. Their nurses & tech’s are brain washed.
        Note to moderator. So you have edited my posts for language? Do you know how many times I’ve read same in other posts here? Just commenting.

    • Is this really true, Kat? I can’t seem to find it right now, but I’m sure the fanatics will start bleating about it soon, and it will be all over the news. This is at least a little move in the right direction.

  16. To Apocalyptic Queen from 1/23:
    Excellent comments.
    From what I know, the Delphi Screener can’t be had in USA. I tried to get it years ago but no luck. I have not yet tried a Canadian pharmacy though.
    Re Trovagene. Per them this was discontinued in 2015. Why? Get a load of this. They told me it was “due to lack of interest.” Lack of ##$%#^^ interest they say??!!
    It was NEVER advertised. Trovagene never had any news releases of its product. It was by fluke my husband found it.
    This is something, on my list, to try and get a local tv story coverage. I’ll let you know how that goes.

  17. What really worries me about this vaccine. I’m NOT a scientist but I know that the flu jab changes each year as certain strains become more prevalent. And that if a virus mutates it can jump from animals to us. Suppose the vaccine damp down high risk strains of HPV and other lesser ones mutate and get deadly? Or if the strains suppressed mutate?

    • Viruses mutate. Some mutate faster than others. The seasonal flu strains mutate extremely rapidly, thus we need new flu vaccines each year. It’s somewhat of a guess on which ones to include, and sometimes they miss. Sometimes, a previous flu vaccine will give us partial immunity from a new strain.

      Most viruses do not mutate that quickly. IF HPV (especially 16 & 18) is responsible for the bulk of cervical cancers, it, along with some of the other strains in the vaccine, should protect from the vast majority of CC – adrenocarcinoma being the exception – and one which PAP does not catch either.

      For instance, measles and polio have not mutated significantly over the decades they’ve been studied. The same strains are offered today as were offered 55 years ago. Likewise, if you had measles in 1960, you would still have immunity. However, if you had the flu (really – not just a bad cold or one of the “new and improved” coronaviruses), you would not be immune from another flu. For instance, I had Hong Kong Flu (H3N2) in the 1968 pandemic. I’m sure I retain partial immunity from that strain. I would still be eligible to get an H1N1 flu, should I be exposed.

      One difference between flu, measles, and the common cold and many other viral diseases is how fast they spread. An average person with measles, for instance, infects 30 other people. Most of us, even if we HAD HPV-18 from birth would not have 30 (unprotected) sexual partners.

      Should other strains of HPV (like the ones that cause common warts) mutate and become deadly, they could modify the HPV vaccine to accommodate those. Immunology is an active research area!

      HPV is unlike many other disease-causing viruses in that it requires a very specific contact to catch. If someone wants to ensure that they don’t get genital HPV from a particular person, they are free to not sexually touch the person.

      Fomates, aka as various objects and surfaces, are a potential source of HPV infection – especially those found in the doctor’s office!

      See https://obgyn.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jog.13248 for a larger discussion, including how an infant can be infected with HPV.
      See https://serval.unil.ch/resource/serval:BIB_F744117D937B.P001/REF for a paper discussing how the GYN clinic itself can be the source for genital HPV infection!

      • One thing that I wasn’t able to find in any of my searches of HPV and epidemiology is it’s “R Value”. Put simply, that is the average number of people that each person with the disease spreads it to. If it is exactly 1, the disease is holding steady. If it’s greater than 1, it’s spreading. If it’s less than 1, it’s dying out. The best I could find was one study that showed a minority of couples sexually involved without using condoms (> 3 x per week) for more than 6 months, where one was HPV- and the other HPV+ had the HPV- partner convert to HPV+ I also found that men are more likely to give it to women than women are likely to give it to men.

        I’ve also read that about 1/3 of women are HPV+. Clearly, the rate of CC is much smaller than that! Perhaps HPV of certain strains is a necessary condition but not a sufficient condition. (E.g., oxygen is a necessary condition of a fire. However, it is not a sufficient condition (needs a spark or heat). Reading _Lord of the Rings_ is a sufficient condition to know who the character Gandalf is. However, it is not a necessary condition (You could watch the movie or have someone tell you at least part of the story.) Koch’s Postulates require that something be both a necessary and sufficient condition to be considered “the cause” of a disease. (E.g., presence of TB bacteria must be present in all cases of tuberculosis to be the cause, and all people with the disease of TB must have TB bacteria for it to be the cause. — This has been long demonstrated to be true.)

        Now, does everyone with HPV of certain strains get CC? Clearly not! Does everyone with CC have HPV?

        As I’ve discovered that they know that some infants are infected with these “dangerous” strains of HPV from before or during their birth, plus it appears to be transmissable from inanimate things (even after a long time), plus it’s in many people’s mouths (it exists in some cancers of the mouth and throat), I have to wonder how well the HPV vaccine works, as many virgins are already infected with it?

        We’ve known for a long time that most people clear HPV within a couple of years. That should include most of the babies, plus the children who would get it because they put all sorts of things in their mouths, and touch many things. Then later, when we touch doorknobs and other things, then use the bathroom or touch sanitary products…. So, why would people so-innoculated when very young not have cleared HPV long before they are eligible for the vaccine, or can become sexually active (even if subjected to childhood sexual abuse!)?

        Moreover, few viral tests actually look for the virus. In most of them, they look for the antibodies. Pap only looks for the (pre)cancerous changes in some cells – not HPV. I’m not sure which type of test any of the HPV tests are. Are they lumping women with an active HPV infection, perhaps one which they cannot clear, with women who’ve had HPV at some point in their lives, cleared it, and have the antibodies? I haven’t been able to find that! If so, that would confound the whole testing of women who’ve had the HPV vaccine and yet are positive on pap tests, or even positive in biopsies for CC. Hmmmm.

      • Love the studies & sources.
        Like SAM missiles for doctor’s BS bombs.
        I save more info from this site than anywhere else.
        Thanks.

    • https://blogs.kcl.ac.uk/cancerprevention/2018/07/06/why-arent-we-seeing-the-effect-of-vaccination-against-hpv-16-18-on-cervical-cancer-registration-in-england/

      I find that the King’s College blog has some useful posts on HPV. The number of women under 30 getting cervical cancer must be very small, so a 54% increase in a small number isn’t going to be that great. As this paper points out, the increase in cases in the under 30s is due to them changing the goal posts in the grand scheme of things rather than a failure of screening/epidemic. But try telling that to Jo’s Tosh or The Mail.

      • Article in Metro newspaper: a trans man is urging other trans men or anyone with a cervix to get a smear test! I have nothing against trans anyone …until they start bleating about attending smears!!

      • I’ve read a few times that cervical screening reduces the number of deaths in a certain age group by a huge margin, 50% fewer deaths or 40%…but then when you take a closer look at the research, it’s 1 death rather than 2, so it’s all very misleading…(as intended)
        No mention of all the unnecessary “treatments either”…

        Actually, there was a very helpful chart posted in the BMJ, think it was in the comments section showing the number getting cervical screening at a certain age with and without screening, the numbers were overall so low, you had to ask…why are we spending millions on this screening program? Surely there’s a bigger threat to our lives that could use the money. Suicide rates are on the rise – that’s always been a horribly underfunded area.
        No wonder they keep those charts away from women, you’d have to conclude, “what’s all the fuss about?”…
        Does anyone recall the chart? Can’t think of the author’s name…I’ll have to do some digging – the post goes back quite a few years now.

  18. Just watched a series called “The Keepers”…horrible sexual abuse of teenage girls at a catholic girls school in Baltimore in the 1960s & 1970s – the alleged culprit, a priest, died without facing a single charge, it seems he was also trafficking girls to some local policemen, business people etc.

    The Catholic church (and the investigating district attorney) have now admitted he was probably an abuser, a pedophile – compensation has been paid to some of the survivors. (how can you compensate someone who endured repeated rapes from age 13 or 14 over 3 or 4 years?) The DA said there was simply insufficient evidence to take the matter further, I would have thought similar fact evidence would persuade any jury.

    THis priest also conducted pelvic exams on some of the girls, and he’d advise parents that their daughter needed to see a gynaecologist, and off they’d go, he’d allegedly get the girl into the stirrups and rape her while the “doctor” was touching her breasts – he’d carry out douches on some of the girls in his office.

    It seems a couple of the girls confided in a young nun, she was apparently going to report the matter to the Police, (which was probably dangerous in itself given they were allegedly involved in the abuse) but was murdered by blunt force trauma to the skull. A survivor says that Maskell (the priest) took her to see the body in a wooded area and said, “see this is what happens when you say bad things about people”…
    Some people were critical of the survivors, for not speaking up earlier or were dubious that some had repressed memories and the abuse only came back to them 20 years or more after these horribly traumatic events.
    Of course, we now know this is a fairly common thing, to go elsewhere during the abuse, and push it to the back of the mind – some women never say a word about the abuse, just too painful, others feel strong enough to face the memory of the trauma as they get older. I don’t think anyone can accurately predict how they’d react if they were raped or assaulted – certainly, in 1970 the odds are you’d say nothing…and try and distance yourself from your attacker. Even today, it’s a challenging process to report a rape.
    .
    It’s ugly stuff – but males using positions of power to rape and/or sexually assault were rarely investigated and charged back then – they got away with it and so they became more and more brazen. A woman making a complaint about a doctor in 1970 – well, she got nowhere. People routinely looked the other way, it was a dangerous time to be a woman, especially a young woman. (very few female doctors, unchecked medical power, no regard for women or their legal rights etc.)

    Of course, we’re not out of the woods yet…but I love to hear the Police have charged a doctor or a priest or anyone else in a position of power, it rarely happened years ago and so these men assaulted women over decades, many had an established modus operandi….and many of their colleagues knew what they were up to but did nothing about it. We now have laws that compel a colleague to report inappropriate or possibly criminal conduct – if you look the other way or take no action, you may find yourself in court.

  19. This week is cervical brainwashing week and the Eve Appeal who previously told us we should “make the right choice and attend when invited” to smears now turns it’s attention to the Every Girl Project. Brainwashing around London and south East about gynaecology issues to girls in school. I’m just glad my daughter is 23!!

  20. For any ladies on instagram the odious #cervicalhealthhannah is planning a new blog for her cervicalscreen1 site. She would like to hear from anyone who’s never had a smear or those who have had a bad experience and you CAN DM her if you wish. No names will b useď

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