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Efficacy of thermoablation in treating cervical precancerous lesions in a low-resource setting

Authors Tran PL, Kenfack B, Tincho Foguem E, Viviano M, Temogne L, Tebeu P, Catarino R, Benski AC, Vassilakos P, Petignat P

Received 30 May 2017

Accepted for publication 26 August 2017

Published 1 December 2017 Volume 2017:9 Pages 879—886


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Everett F Magann

Phuong Lien Tran,1 Bruno Kenfack,2 Eveline Tincho Foguem,3 Manuela Viviano,1 Liliane Temogne,2 Pierre-Marie Tebeu,4 Rosa Catarino,1 Anne-Caroline Benski,1 Pierre Vassilakos,5 Patrick Petignat1

1Division of Gynecology, Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Geneva University Hospitals, Geneva, Switzerland; 2Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Dschang, Dschang, Cameroon; 3Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, District Hospital of Biyem-Assi, Yaoundé, Cameroon; 4Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, University Centre Hospital, Yaoundé, Cameroon; 5Geneva Foundation for Medical Education and Research, Geneva, Switzerland

Introduction: Treating cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) grades 2 and 3 is the recommended strategy for preventing invasive carcinoma in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Our objective was to assess the efficacy of thermoablation in the treatment of CIN2 and CIN3 in a screen-and-treat approach.
Methods: Women aged 30–49 years in Dschang, Cameroon, were invited to undergo vaginal sampling for human papillomavirus (HPV), samples being assessed by an Xpert HPV Assay. HPV-positive women underwent visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA) and visual inspection with Lugol’s iodine (VILI), cervical biopsy, and endocervical curettage. Women positive for HPV-16/18/45 or other HPV types with abnormal VIA/VILI were treated by thermoablation on the same day. The primary outcome was persistence of high-grade disease on cytologic examination at 12 months.
Results: Of a total of 1,012 recruited women, 188 were HPV-positive, 121 patients required thermoablation, and 99 had a CIN of grade <2, making the overtreatment rate 9.9%. The cure rate for CIN2 and CIN3 at 12 months was 70.6%. Failure (higher risk of persistent disease) was associated with the presence of occult endocervical lesions at baseline diagnosis (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] =128.97 [95% confidence interval [CI], 8.80–1,890.95]; p<0.0001). First sexual intercourse before the age of 15 was also a risk factor (aOR =0.003 [95% CI, 0.001–0.61]; p=0.023).
Conclusion: In LMICs, use of thermoablation in a screen-and-treat approach is a valuable treatment option for CIN2 and CIN3. Studies comparing thermoablation with cryotherapy are needed to determine the most appropriate treatment for cervical precancer in such countries.

Keywords: cervical cancer, HPV testing, self-sampling, thermoablation

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