Diagnostic Utility of Endocervical Curettage During Colposcopy Among Patients of Varying Risk Factors

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Journal of lower genital tract disease








OBJECTIVE: Endocervical curettage (ECC) during colposcopy is recommended in certain circumstances; however, diagnostic use remains unclear. We evaluate the utility of ECC among patients with non-fully visualized squamocolumnar junction (SCJ) and certain patient socioeconomic factors. METHODS: Retrospective chart analysis was completed for patients aged older than 21 years who underwent a colposcopy at 2 study sites between 2012 and 2021. Demographics and histopathologic results were analyzed. RESULTS: A total of 1,516 colposcopies were reviewed; 73.8% (n = 1,119) had an ECC with colposcopy. Of those, 92.1% (n = 1,031) had benign ECC whereas 13.9% (n = 156) had a positive ECC at time of colposcopy. Most patients with benign ECC had benign/low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion pathology on colposcopy biopsy (82.3%; n = 914; p < .001), and most patients with high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (HSIL) on ECC had HSIL on colposcopy biopsy (63.4%; n = 52; p < .001) However, when looking at patients with high-grade pathology on colposcopy biopsy, it was seen that most had benign or low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion on ECC (79.5%; n = 205; p < .001). Most patients with adequately visualized SCJ on colposcopy were noted to have HSIL on biopsy and negative ECC (73%; n = 81; p < .001). This result was similar in patients with non-fully visualized SCJ, although not statistically significant. When stratified by socioeconomic status, most patients with high-grade lesions had a benign ECC. CONCLUSIONS: Endocervical curettage has been described to increase the identification of high-grade lesions at time of colposcopy. This descriptive study shows that many high-grade lesions at time of excisional procedure had a benign ECC on colposcopy, with no demonstrated clear additional utility in high-risk groups.


Obstetrics and Gynecology