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Gynecol Oncol. 1999 Nov;75(2):277-81.

Evaluation of CO(2) laser excision or vaporization for the treatment of vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia.

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Division of Gynecology, European Institute of Oncology, Milan, Italy.



Our objective was to evaluate the results of laser surgery in patients with vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia (VIN).


From January 1990 to December 1996, 52 patients with histologically proven VIN were treated with CO(2) laser vaporization or laser excision. The analysis included anamnestic characteristics, clinical aspects, types of treatment, correlation of the preoperative biopsy with the excised pathologic specimen, and follow-up results.


Fourteen women underwent laser vaporization, and 38, laser excision. Of the patients submitted to vaporization, 11 were cured in one session (75%), 1 required two procedures, and 2 other patients, who underwent more treatments, eventually developed invasive squamous cell cancer 5 and 7 years from the initial treatment. The cure rate for laser excision was better, as a single session of treatment was curative in 33 of 38 patients (87%). In 3 cases the pathology report on the excised specimen showed an unrecognized invasive lesion (12%) and the women underwent radical surgery. The 2 remaining patients, both affected by multifocal disease, experienced recurrences and were treated with laser excision 2 and 3 years after the primary treatment, respectively. Symptom relief was obtained in all patients studied with both laser vaporization and excision.


Excisional laser surgery is an effective treatment for patients with VIN. In addition, CO(2) laser excision allows evaluation of the operative specimen and detection of occult early invasion with good preservation of vulvar morphology; laser vaporization, while retaining good cosmetic results, is less effective in VIN treatment and does not allow evaluation of the surgical specimen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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