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Colposcopy and biopsy

Colposcòpia a Vall d'Hebron

Colposcopy allows an in-depth examination of the uterus, or cervix, for early identification of possible lesions that could be precursors to cancer or cancerous lesions. This is done using a special microscope called a colposcope, which is used to find out the cause of an "abnormal" cytology. During the exploration, gynaecologists study the cervix and decide whether a biopsy should be taken and from what area. They can also remove certain tissues, if necessary. For the biopsy, a small sample is taken and sent to the laboratory to examine the cells. From this examination, the doctors can diagnose and decide on treatment, if necessary.

Hospital o serveis complementaris relacionats

Maternity and Children's Hospital

Where to find it

Description

What is it for?

This technique is used for early detection of lesions that could trigger cancer of the cervix and also to take samples to diagnose and even remove tissues.

This exploration also lets us diagnose other sexually transmitted infections in addition to HPV.

 

How does it work?

To perform the test, the patient should be placed on the gynaecological stretcher with legs in stirrups.

The doctor then inserts a device inside the vagina, the speculum, which separates the walls, and then brings the colposcope, which lets them see the area to be examined. If they detect anomalous areas during examination, they can decide whether to take a biopsy of the tissue that must be analysed later with a microscope in the laboratory.

Anomalies detected in a cervical biopsy are called cervical intraepithelial neoplasms (CIN) and are classified as:

  • Mild (CIN 1): generally disappear spontaneously without treatment
  • Moderate (CIN 2): another cytology or colposcopy is recommended after 6 months to decide treatment
  • Severe (CIN 3). Must be treated

 

Risks

Possible discomfort while taking the sample and, sometimes, light bleeding that can last up to 3 or 4 days.

 
Related professionals
Dr. Antonio
Gil Moreno
Biomedical Research in Gynaecology
Head of Department
Gynaecology
 
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