“It is normal after a colposcopy with a biopsy to have a small amount of spotting or light bleeding,” explains Lindsay Appel, MD, an OB-GYN with the Family Childbirth & Children’s Center at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.

What about heavy bleeding after a colposcopy?

“I usually tell patients that if they experience bleeding that is heavier than a period following a colposcopy, that is not expected and to come in for evaluation,” says Dr. Appel.

Heavy Bleeding Defined

Dr. Appel explains, “Heavy bleeding is generally defined as bleeding soaking through a large pad in faster than an hour for more than two hours in a row. In addition, bleeding should not persist more than seven to 10 days following a colposcopy.”

If a biopsy was not taken during this procedure, a woman many still experience some spotting or even light bleeding.

If a biopsy was taken during the colposcopy, there of course will be the expected small amount of blood, but there may also be a dark discharge.

This dark discharge is actually a paste that the doctor uses – called Monsel’s paste – to assist with the procedure. Afterwards it may be discharged from your vagina.

Do not use a tampon to catch any discharge.

Dr. Appel says, “The best thing for a woman to do if she is experiencing heavy or prolonged bleeding following a colposcopy or biopsy procedure is to make a follow-up visit with her physician so that an exam can be performed.”

Dr. Appel addresses a full range of obstetric and gynecologic needs for women. She has participated in several OBGYN research presentations at professional conferences.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.