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Colposcopy is a diagnostic procedure done to detect abnormalities in the cervix. It is recommended if a pap smear test result comes back abnormal.
Colposcopy makes use of a special binocular-like instrument that magnifies and illuminates the cells of the cervix so that precancerous changes are easily detectable. You will be asked to lie down as you would for a pelvic exam and the instrument does not go inside you but is placed close to your cervix.
If the specialist does find something abnormal in a colposcopy exam, they will order a biopsy to determine the exact nature of the disease from samples of tissue taken from your cervix or vagina.