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Cone biopsy

Biopsy - cone; Cervical conization; CKC; Cervical intraepithelial neoplasia - cone biopsy; CIN - cone biopsy; Precancerous changes of the cervix - cone biopsy; Cervical cancer - cone biopsy; Squamous intraepithelial lesion - cone biopsy; LSIL - cone biopsy; HSIL - cone biopsy; Low-grade cone biopsy; High-grade cone biopsy; Carcinoma in situ-cone biopsy; CIS - cone biopsy; ASCUS - cone biopsy; Atypical glandular cells - cone biopsy; AGUS - cone biopsy; Atypical squamous cells - cone biopsy; Pap smear - cone biopsy; HPV - cone biopsy; Human papilloma virus - cone biopsy; Cervix - cone biopsy; Colposcopy - cone biopsy

A cone biopsy (conization) is surgery to remove a sample of abnormal tissue from the cervix. The cervix is the lower part of the uterus (womb) that opens at the top of the vagina. Abnormal changes in the cells on the surface of the cervix is called cervical dysplasia.

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Female reproductive anatomy
Cold cone biopsy
Cold cone removal

I Would Like to Learn About:

How the Test is Performed

This procedure is done in the hospital or in a surgery center. During the procedure:

Most of the time, you will be able to go home the same day as the procedure.

How to Prepare for the Test

You may be asked to not eat or drink for 6 to 8 hours before the test.

How the Test will Feel

After the procedure, you may have some cramping or discomfort for about a week. For about 4 to 6 weeks avoid:

For 2 to 3 weeks after the procedure, you may have discharge that is:

Why the Test is Performed

Cone biopsy is done to detect cervical cancer or early changes that lead to cancer. A cone biopsy is done if a test called colposcopy cannot find the cause of an abnormal Pap smear.

Cone biopsy may also be used to treat:

Normal Results

A normal result means there are no precancerous or cancerous cells in the cervix.

What Abnormal Results Mean

Most often, abnormal results mean that there are precancerous or cancerous cells in the cervix. These changes are called cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). The changes are divided into 3 groups:

Abnormal results may also be due to cervical cancer.

Risks

Risks of cone biopsy include:

Cone biopsy may also make it hard for your provider to interpret abnormal Pap smear results in the future.

Related Information

Colposcopy - directed biopsy
Cervical cancer
Pap test

References

Cohen PA, Jhingran A, Oaknin A, Denny L. Cervical cancer. Lancet. 2019;393(10167):169-182. PMID: 30638582 pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30638582/.

Salcedo MP, Baker ES, Schmeler KM. Intraepithelial neoplasia of the lower genital tract (cervix, vagina, vulva): etiology, screening, diagnosis, management. In: Lobo RA, Gershenson DM, Lentz GM, Valea FA, eds. Comprehensive Gynecology. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2017:chap 28.

Watson LA. Cervical conization. In: Fowler GC, ed. Pfenninger and Fowler's Procedures for Primary Care. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020: chap 128.

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Review Date: 1/1/2020  

Reviewed By: John D. Jacobson, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda Center for Fertility, Loma Linda, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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