A report is supplied on 216 samples of cervical tissue incidentally found in 684 endometrial specimens collected during hysteroscopic examination of postmenopausal women with uterine bleeding and a recent negative Pap smear. We found 43 (19.9%) specimens including cervical tissue with some histologic sign of pathology. Twenty-five (11.6%) had histologic features suggestive for human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, while 18 (8.3%) had cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). Of the 18 CIN cases, 9 were CIN I, 6 CIN II and 3 CIN III. Altogether, the prevalence of dysplasia in postmenopausal women with recently referred normal cervical cytology was impressive. A significant number of dysplastic lesions (14 out of 18, 77.7%) did not present any histologic sign of HPV. Also, none of the histologic diagnoses of sub-clinical HPV infection was confirmed by the in situ hybridization. Considering the significant prevalence of high grade lesions (9 CIN II and III, 4.2% of the analysed samples) found in this randomly selected patient population, our data strongly suggest the need for a regular follow-up of the transformation zone in all postmenopausal women. Although in women of postmenopausal age some low grade lesions seem to have only a reactive-reparative significance, a more accurate screening procedure, taking into account the peculiar modifications of the menopausal uterine cervix, is advisable.
- Cervical intraepithelial neoplasia
- Human papillomavirus infection
- Postmenopausal women
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology