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Obstet Gynecol. 2005 Mar;105(3):494-500.

Dysplasia associated with atypical glandular cells on cervical cytology.

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Hartford Hospital, Hartford, Connecticut 06102, USA.

Erratum in

  • Obstet Gynecol. 2005 Jun;105(6):1495.



To estimate the rates of and identify risk factors for disease in women with atypical glandular cells of undetermined significance (AGUS).


From 1998-2001, 477 Pap tests at Hartford Hospital were classified as AGUS and met the inclusion criteria of this study. Findings were evaluated for 2 years from the initial test. Disease was defined as histology results with a finding of high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion or greater.


Disease was diagnosed in 9% of the women, including malignancy in 3%. Women with malignant-appearing AGUS Pap tests had a higher rate of disease (29%) than women with benign-appearing (5%, P < .01) and unspecified AGUS Pap tests (13%, P < .03). Malignancies were associated with all subclassifications of AGUS Pap tests. Women aged less than 35 years were more likely to have disease than women aged 35 years or older (P < .02). Most women aged younger than 35 years had a squamous abnormality, whereas women aged 35 years or older had a greater diversity of squamous and glandular lesions and accounted for all cases of endometrial cancer, adenocarcinoma in situ, and cervical adenocarcinoma. Women with persistent AGUS Pap tests had a 31% rate of disease. The rate of disease among women with AGUS Pap tests collected by liquid-based cytology was 11%, compared with 6% among samples collected by the conventional method.


These data suggest that women with atypical glandular cells are at substantial risk for dysplasia and malignancy. The rate of disease varies with the method of Pap test collection, age, presence of persistent AGUS Pap tests, and AGUS subclassification.

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