Watchful waiting usually involves repeat Pap tests as often as recommended by your doctor for the type of cervical cell change present. Watchful waiting can be a good option for women who can follow through with repeat tests. It may not be a good choice for women who think they will not be able to follow through with repeat tests as often as recommended.
A watchful-waiting period may be recommended for:
It is unlikely that women with minor cervical cell changes would develop more severe changes in a short period of watchful waiting. Cell changes classified as atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASC-US) usually remain the same or return to normal after the first abnormal result.1 Low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (LSIL) may be more likely to be identified as having more severe changes over time, but most LSIL cell changes return to normal or are not identified as more severe changes.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine|
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Brian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Kirtly Jones, MD, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology|
|Last Revised||February 16, 2011|
Last Revised: February 16, 2012
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