What Is Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure (LEEP)?

Loop electrosurgical excision procedure is an advanced technique that involves the removal of abnormal cells from your cervix (the lower, narrow part of the uterus). It is used as a part of the diagnosis and treatment for abnormal or cancerous conditions. 

LEEP Atlanta team is well equipped to carry out the procedure with utmost care and precision. 

What is LEEP?

LEEP is an outpatient procedure that removes abnormal cells and tissue from your cervix using an electric current. 

The procedure uses a thin wire loop that acts as a surgical scalpel that is powered by electricity at its tip, to remove the abnormal tissue. When this loop is passed through the cervical tissues, the current heats the loop, to cut away the abnormal cell layer. 

LEEP is used by doctors for diagnostic or treatment purposes. It provides a larger tissue sample than a Pap smear or biopsy. 

What is the purpose of LEEP?

LEEP is performed when your doctor finds any vaginal or cervical problems during a pelvic exam or suspects cancer.

This procedure may also be used to assist in the diagnosis or treatment of the following:

  • Polyps (benign growths)
  • Genital warts indicative of HPV infection which is a common risk factor for cervical cancer
  • Cervical dysplasia

Do I need any preparation before LEEP?

To undergo the procedure your doctor may advise you to:

  • Take a pregnancy test to confirm you are not pregnant
  • Avoid intercourse or vaginal creams 24 hours before LEEP
  • Stop blood thinners a night before LEEP
  • Carry a sanitary pad
  • Take your usual menstrual cramp painkillers 30 minutes before LEEP

How is LEEP performed?

Once you arrive at the outpatient department, you will be escorted to the operating table. 

  • You will be made to lie down in a supine position with your legs folded and stretched wide apart. 
  • A grounding pad will be placed on your thigh to protect you from the electricity used during LEEP.
  • Your doctor will use a speculum to open the vagina wide for clear and easy access. 
  • The cervix will be numbed using an anesthetic cream or solution.
  • Your doctor will then insert the electrically charged loop wire to excise and remove the abnormal tissue. 
  • Finally, an iron solution will be applied to stop the bleeding.

What should I expect after LEEP?

You are expected to have mild cramps and discomfort post procedure that can be managed by painkillers. It is normal to experience some abnormal vaginal bleeding for up to 2 weeks.

You will be advised to avoid intercourse, tampons, or any strenuous physical activities for at least two weeks after LEEP. You may experience slightly heavy menstrual bleeding during your next cycle. 


LEEP is an advanced diagnostic and surgical procedure to remove abnormal cells from your cervix. This procedure involves minimal postoperative complications when performed by a skilled surgeon. 

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