Clinical significance of the qualification of atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance: An analysis on the basis of histologic diagnoses

Nikos P. Vlahos, Katherine G. Dragisic, Edward E. Wallach, Frances H. Burroughs, Susan Fluck, Dorothy L. Rosenthal

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: This study was undertaken to evaluate the significance of further qualification of atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance in routine Papanicolaou smears. STUDY DESIGN: A retrospective medical records review was conducted on 316 women whose Papanicolaou smears yielded diagnoses of either atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of the presence of an intraepithelial lesion or atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of a reactive process. RESULTS: The overall incidence of a squamous intraepithelial lesion (cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grades I, II, and III) was higher in the group with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of the presence of an intraepithelial lesion than in the group with results suggestive of a reactive process (41.1% vs 22.3%; P= .0344). Women with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of the presence of an intraepithelial lesion were 9.7 times more likely to have high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (cervical intraepithelial neoplasia III) develop than were women with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of a reactive process (95% confidence interval, 1.2674.64). The incidence of high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion was higher among women ≤35 years old than among women >35 years old (17.8% vs 6.3%; P= .0378). CONCLUSION: Women with a diagnosis of atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of the presence of an intraepithelial lesion are more likely to have intraepithelial lesions develop than are those with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of a reactive process. Aggressive evaluation of cases of atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance suggestive of the presence of an intraepithelial lesion with colposcopy and cervical biopsies may be appropriate. Age should be considered as an independent factor in the plan of management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)885-890
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Volume182
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2000

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Keywords

  • Atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance
  • Cervical dysplasia
  • Intraepithelial lesion
  • Reactive process

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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