European Journal of Gynaecological Oncology (EJGO) is published by IMR Press from Volume 40 Issue 1 (2019). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with S.O.G.
Is direct large loop electric excision for the transformation zone reasonable in the investigation of high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions in cervical smears?
Purpose of investigation: To evaluate women with cytological high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (HGSIL) who received standard colposcopic evaluation and direct diagnostic large loop electric excision for the transformation zone (LLETZ) to determine the feasibility of using LLETZ alone (ie, skipping the colposcopic examination). Methods: From May 1999 to May 2001, 70 women, with the mean age of 49.58 years (range, 20-82 years) and with cervical HGSIL categorized by the Bethesda system were all evaluated by colposcopic evaluation and LLETZ. Cases with a satisfactory colposcopy examination were classified as group A and those with an unsatisfactory colposcopy examination were classified as group B. "Over-treatment" was determined if the women did not need further LLETZ for evaluation or management. "Under-treatment" was determined if treatment might be potentially inadequate or invasive cancer could be ruled out during a satisfactory colposcopic evaluation. Results: Group A consisted of ten women who were evaluated satisfactorily by colposcopy and group B consisted of 30 women who were not evaluated satisfactorily by colposcopy. Overall 8.6% of the patients (6/70) were considered "over-treated". The rate of over-treatment was 10.0% (4/40) in group A compared with 6.7% (2/30) in group B. In contrast, overall 10% of the patients (7/70) were considered "under-treated". The rate of under-treatment was 10% (1/40) in group A compared with 10% (3/30), in group B. The positive predictive values of group A and B were 90.6% and 88.0%, respectively. The negative predictive values were 33.2% and 40%, respectively. Conclusion: Direct diagnostic and therapeutic LLETZ for the management of cervical HGSIL may be a better alternative to colposcopy. This method of treatment avoids the possibility of under-treatment and is associated with an acceptable over-treatment rate, especially for postmenopausal women with cytological HGSIL. LLETZ has a good diagnostic accuracy with minimal morbidity and, most importantly, may help reduce patient anxiety, although further studies are needed to directly examine this effect.