Colposcopy is a simple procedure, which enables a detailed examination of the cervix. It involves observing the surface of the cervix, the outer part of its canal, vagina, and vulva with the use of a special microscope (colposcope) to see the changes at high magnification with good lighting. Colposcopy enables to see changes that can’t be noticed during a conventional examination, such as pre-cancerous and early-cancerous changes, as well as, cervix cancer. According to statistics, when combined with cervical screening test, the procedure gives 100% diagnostic accuracy. Colposcopy is used to remove a small sample of tissue for a closer histopathological examination in the laboratory (biopsy), to determine what treatments are needed to be performed on the cervix, vagina and vulva, as well as, to assess if the whole of abnormal tissue has been removed during the treatment. Colposcopy is painless and non-invasive, if required, it can be performed several times.
In Top Medical Clinic, colposcopy is performed by Prof. Pawel Knapp, who’s been carrying out training courses of colposcopy for other gynaecologists and is an undisputed expert in the field. Our clinic has the top-class German colposcopy equipment by Leisegang, and the possibility to perform complex microsurgery procedures, both laser and those saving the cervix in pre-cancerous conditions.
What are the indications for the procedure?
It is always the doctor who decides if colposcopy is needed. It may be necessary in the following situations:
- identification of places with a high risk of dysplasia (abnormal tissue), or cancers
- obtaining a sample for histopathological examination in order to make a diagnosis
- assessment of abnormal tissue in the cervix canal that suggest dysplasia
- verification of abnormal cervical screening test results
- identification of HPV infection
- check-up of abnormal changes from the previous colposcopy
The patient should bring to the appointment the results of the last cervical screening test.
How is the procedure performed?
The procedure is performed on gynaecological examination table and consists of a several phases. At the beginning, the doctor views the cervix using a speculum (the instrument inserted into the vagina that is also used during the cervical screening test). Then the cervix is examined with the colposcope at low magnification (the instrument is not inserted into the vagina). The doctor will put a number of different solutions on the cervix and look for changes that indicate the presence of abnormal cells. If, during the procedure, the doctor notices some abnormal tissue, samples might be taken for histopathological examination in the laboratory. The whole procedure lasts for around 15 minutes and is a vital one, without which patients with abnormal cervical screening test results can’t be treated. Only doctors with special qualifications can perform colposcopy.