If you’re not a woman, you probably don’t realize everything that goes into regular female preventative care. Even if you are a woman, you might not realize how many of those checkups and procedures come without pain management – even if you experience pretty significant pain.
Pain your doctor is going to downplay, by the way.
Here are 15 medical procedures that you’re going to be shocked are routinely performed without anesthesia.
15. They can’t really believe it’s nothing.
“I got put under to have wisdom teeth removed, but nothing when I got my IUD put in. I literally screamed when they inserted it.
I’ve broken bones and have been in less pain.”
14. Yeah, with an actual knife.
“I started bleeding when pregnant with my first and went to see my OBGYN at the hospital. She looked and said there were polyps on my cervix. She then told me to just hold the nurse’s hand and pick a spot on the ceiling, and she’ll cut them out real quick.”
I honestly never thought to ask for any kind of pain meds for any procedure like this before. WTF is wrong with me and other women? We’ve been so brainwashed to believe that ‘it’s just a pinch’ and now drive home and go make dinner.
I’m a medical professional and had to read a thread on Reddit to realize I need to advocate for myself, and I don’t need to be in pain during gyno procedures.”
13. It’s a fair argument.
“I argued with a doctor who told me that there would be no pain management for my colposcopy — after I showed up for it. His reasoning was that ‘it was only a five- to 10-minute procedure,’ and I could have some ibuprofen(!) afterwards.
When I told him that vasectomies were a five- to 10-minute procedure, too, but that I bet if he were having one, he’d want some anesthetic for his balls, he straight-up walked out on me.”
12. It’s never just a pinch.
“I had a cervical biopsy when I was 18, and the doctor was like, ‘You’ll feel just a pinch.’ Then I felt, well, a chunk of my cervix cut out and screamed. He was like, ‘Shhh.’ So I cried quietly, and he looked up at me and said, ‘Why are you crying? There are no nerve endings on the cervix. I know you aren’t actually feeling pain.
That was literal decades ago. I had hoped things had changed for women since then. Good to hear that old a$$hole doctor is still the norm.
Cool. Real cool.”
11. It shouldn’t be normal.
“I had a procedure done a few months ago where they had to tear through my cervix to fill my uterus with fluid — something to do with fertility issues.
The pain was unbearable, and I felt violated. I cried so hard and was furious they would let me go through that without any anesthesia or pain reliever.
How is this so normal?”
10. Because it definitely does.
“I got a LEEP procedure, and that was more painful than drug-free childbirth. I can feel my cervix descend before my period and I can feel the penis on my cervix during s*x.
Still, the doctor told me I shouldn’t feel anything. I had no s*xual desire for months after the LEEP, and I talked to a lot of women who had the same procedure and some said they’re like that after years, or they feel pain or bleed during s*x.
Why are they so set on ‘the cervix has no pain receptors?’”
9. Cruelty for sure.
“I had both an HSG and a saline ultrasound. I have high pain tolerance, and I was sweating profusely and extremely nauseous. I have never needed a few minutes before getting up, but I did that time — and that was with 800 mg taken beforehand that I learned I should take from the internet, not my doctor, who never said a word about needing pain medication.
I am absolutely blown away that a doctor can do that procedure hundreds of times a year — see hundreds of women crying, sweating, writhing in pain, and passing out from pain — yet no form of anesthesia is ever offered.
It’s f**king cruelty. They literally push a tube through your cervix. Why would they ever think this would be ok to do without pain control?”
8. I almost passed out during mine.
“When I was 18, my gynecologist’s office apparently forgot to tell me to take extra strength ibuprofen before my cervical biopsy — that’s the recommendation they use. I got the same ‘just a pinch’ spiel, and they decided it was worth it to just go ahead and do it anyway.
The sample the doc took got stuck, and he was yanking on it while it was still attached. The nurse who was with him had to grab and hold my leg because she saw I was about to kick him in the head.
I had done eight years of Taekwondo at that point. I would have made an a$$ of myself. If doctors really think it doesn’t hurt, perhaps they should just shut up and deal with however we choose to express our clearly fake pain.”
7. We literally can’t help it.
“I had a LEEP procedure fully awake. I remember I started shaking, and the doctor got on to me. It was a horrible experience. It frustrates me. We can get pain medicine for removals of moles, but f**k your cervix.
That was just one of the many things they should have not have done.”
6. It seems like a tossup.
“When I had my first baby, I was very tiny, and the kiddo was a big, bouncing boy. I got snapped at by the first nurse for making a sound. This was long before maternity pain relief was really a thing. We got gas and pethidine/demerol. Fast forward, my then-husband had his vasectomy done eight weeks after my fourth baby.
During 15 hours of labor, I had gas. For the excruciating pain after, I got OTC pain killers. For the raw, cracked bleeding nipples, I was told, ‘You know how it goes, they’ll toughen up in a couple of weeks (of breastfeeding).’
He was given Valium to take the night before, another one for that morning, and then pain relief for the duration of the five-minute procedure. He was given another script for afterward and told to go easy for a few days.
Are women seen as tough or subhuman?”
5. Trauma for years to come.
“The last time I had an endometrial biopsy attempted on me – my third one, my first two were done successfully but painfully — I could not handle it and asked to doctor to stop. I had to ask her again to stop because she ignored my first try.
She became visibly agitated and started slamming things around the room, ripping her gloves off and mumbling that this was a waste of her time.
This was nearly 10 years ago, and I have not been to a gynecologist since. Not only did she hurt me, but she also shamed me for being intolerant to the pain.”
4. None of us can.
“My hysteroscopy hurt so badly that they had to call extra people to hold me down on the table.
I was screaming for help and ended up kicking my doctor in the face and breaking his nose — on accident of course, but honestly, he deserved it.
He was literally torturing me and all he cared about was completing the procedure at any cost. I bled and was sore for nearly a month.
Something was very, very wrong with what he did, but I could never tell you what. I cannot believe they do that procedure without sedation.”
3. You’re just mentioning this now?
“So, I used to get ingrown toenails. I went to a doctor who numbed them, removed the edges, and then shoved a Q-tip of silver nitrate into my nail bed to kill the toenail to prevent it from growing back in there. I was numbed for it. But after having my son and a second-degree tear, I wasn’t healing properly. My gyno told me there was a section where that wouldn’t seal even after many stitches.
He said, ‘Don’t worry, I’ll take care of it.’ Before I know it, I’m laying back, and he’s prepping. He calmly asks if I’d ever heard of silver nitrate and explains that it’ll seal the spot. It was the same as with my toenail — a Q-tip covered in the stuff. I was in so much pain, and I’d just pushed a giant baby out of there for 31+ hours!
I was crying, and wanted to cuss him out and kick him in the head! The nurse then pipes up, ‘Oh, I think we’ve got a numbing spray around here somewhere we could have used.’
You knew what that’d do and feel like, and you’re just now mentioning anything for the pain?! The stuff literally kills fingernails! I think it’s used in photography! And y’all are just slathering it on an open wound on my most tender area to cauterize it with ZERO pain meds and minimal warning!?! Burn the whole system down!”
2. Maybe manage the pain next time??
“I had no idea to expect pain for my colonoscopy. I thought that because they weren’t numbing anything, it must not be bad. I started crying and screaming, and I couldn’t keep my legs open.
They ended up only doing a partial biopsy because I went hypotensive (blood pressure dropped). It angers me to this day.
I have also had three IUDs, and my blood pressure tanks from the pain every time. I have to be monitored.”
1. Those aren’t nerves, doc.
“Just the other week, I had a vulvar biopsy on the very delicate, sensitive tissue on the inner part of my vulva. My gynecologist assured me that I wouldn’t feel a thing after she injected some local anesthetic. Well, that clown fucked up the anesthetic, because I felt EVERYTHING.
It was horrible. I literally had tears pouring out of my squeezed-shut eyes as I threw my hand over my mouth and stifled a scream. She said, ‘Oh, you felt that? You weren’t supposed to feel that!’ Then, she kept going — gouging into my delicate bits with her medieval tool — and I kept crying and shaking.
She then commented to the nurse, ‘Oh, she must be nervous.’ It took me a few hours to stop shaking due to the intense pain put my body in such a panic mode.
I had a few panic attacks for the next three days, kept obsessively thinking about the procedure, and would just randomly start crying. Don’t Google what a vulvar biopsy is if you’re squeamish.”
Y’all, I cannot. Some of these have happened to me, and I can’t believe how my doctor acted like it was nothing.
Is there a procedure missing from this list? Tell us in the comments what it is!