Centres of Excellence -> Women’s Health -> Colposcopy


Colposcopic examination is a screening method complementary to clinical and cytological examinations, which is carried out in the gynecological clinic, lasting between 10 and 20 minutes. Using a specially designed movable microscope called a colposcope, the examination involves observing the vagina, vulva, and cervix under high magnification (6 - 40 times) to observe and detect any suspicious changes. More precisely, colposcopy enables an accurate assessment of the extent and determination of boundaries with healthy tissue, as well as targeted sampling of swabs or tissue sections. The gynecologist uses special coating solutions that emphasize all areas of abnormality on the cervix and vaginal epithelium.

Colposcopy is most commonly performed if certain abnormalities are found in a previously conducted Pap smear, serving as a diagnostic supplement to the cytological findings (Pap smear) to confirm Pap smear results. If the gynecologist identifies suspicious areas and an abnormalities of the mucosa during the colposcopic examination, then a targeted biopsy from the suspicious area is usually performed— taking a tissue sample, which is then sent for further histopathological analysis.

Colposcopy is used to diagnose:

  • Precancerous changes in the cervical mucosa (LSIL and HSIL - low & high squamous intraepithelial lesions; previously called as CIN 1, 2, and 3)
  • Precancerous changes in the vagina
  • Precancerous changes in the external genitalia
  • Carcinomas of the cervix, vagina, and vulva
  • Genital warts
  • Cervicitis (inflammation of the cervix).

The accuracy of colposcopy in combination with cytology (Pap smear) reaches 99%, and further treatment depends on the results of the colposcopy or biopsy themselves.

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