The cervix is the lower, narrowing of the uterus that connects the uterus to the vagina.
Dysplasia is not cancer but is a precancerous change that can develop into cancer.
HPV (Human papillomavirus) is the most common sexually transmitted infection and the most
common cause of cervical dysplasia and cervical cancer.
This is why close monitoring with pap smears is very important to identify cervical dysplasia before it develops into cervical cancer. All women should begin having pap smears at age 21.
A pap smear is a test to sample cells on the surface of the cervix and screen for cervical dysplasia. HPV testing can be done at the same time.
Pap smears may result as: Negative (normal), Atypical, Low grade or High grade, in addition to being HPV positive or HPV negative. Certain strains of HPV are more likely to develop into cervical cancer.
Although a pap smear can identify cervical dysplasia, further tests are often required. If you have had an abnormal pap, a treatment / monitoring plan will be individualized and determined by your physician. The goal is to prevent the progression into cervical cancer.
The pathology may result as: CIN 1, CIN 2, CIN 3 or cervical cancer.
CIN stands for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia and is a precancerous change, with CIN 2 and CIN 3 having a higher chance of developing into cancer.
These include: Cone biopsy or LEEP (loop electrosurgical excision procedure) – a procedure under anesthesia to
remove a larger amount of abnormal cervical tissue. 6
C02 laser – uses high intensity energy from a light beam to destroy abnormal areas of the cervix.
In more advanced cases, further surgical intervention may be necessary.