OBJECTIVE--To evaluate the outcome of "cold coagulation" as a treatment modality for major grade cervical pathology, cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN 2 and 3) in a department of genitourinary medicine. DESIGN--Prospective programme trial with 18 month follow-up of patients undergoing "cold coagulation" of the cervical transformation zone following colposcopic assessment and biopsy. SETTING--A genitourinary medicine colposcopy clinic. PATIENTS--125 female patients with histologically proven major cervical pathology (CIN 2 and 3). The mean age of the patients was 24.5 years; 73% were unmarried, 43% currently smoked and 62% had a history of exposure to the human papilloma virus. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Eradication of cervical abnormality with cytological findings at 4, 8 and 12 months and colposcopy at 18 months, with intervention colposcopic assessment if follow-up cytology was abnormal. RESULTS--Eradication of CIN was achieved in 96.5% of patients, the majority of treatment failures being detected at first cytology. Attendance for follow-up was good, with only a 16% default rate. Final colposcopy yielded five treatment failures. No major complications were noted. CONCLUSION--These results confirm that "cold coagulation" provides an acceptable, efficient and effective, low cost consumer friendly treatment for CIN 2 and CIN 3 in an out-patient genitourinary medicine colposcopy clinic.
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