If you have had an abnormal Pap smear, you may need a colposcopy. This is often the first time our practitioner meets a patient, when her PCP has referred her because of an abnormal Pap smear. You do not need to do anything to prepare for a colposcopy, but you should wear comfortable clothing as you will be wearing a sanitary pad when you leave. An appropriate size speculum will be placed and gently opened to reveal your cervix. Vinegar will be placed on the cervix. This makes the abnormal cells "light up" when we look at them with a special microscope with a green light. Your health care provider will then take some biopsies. You will experience this as cramping. Then a brown iron based substance called Monsel's solution will be placed on the biopsy sites for hemostasis. You will have a discharge that looks like coffee grounds for up to 2 weeks.