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Gynecol Oncol. 2013 Nov;131(2):386-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2013.06.006. Epub 2013 Jul 23.

The use of argon beam coagulation in treating vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia III: a retrospective review.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Kelly Gynecologic Oncology Service, 600 North Wolfe Street, Phipps 281, Baltimore, MD 21287, USA.


Argon beam coagulation (ABC) has unique properties which make it suitable for the local treatment of superficial epithelial disorders such as vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia (VIN III).


To evaluate argon beam coagulation in treating multifocal VIN III.


Argon beam coagulation was used in twenty-nine patients. ABC was set at 80 W, 7 L/min. All patients were given 1% silvadene cream to apply to vulva. Patients had follow-up appointments two weeks and six weeks postoperatively. Patients were followed every three to six months for the subsequent year.


2 of 29 (6.8%) experienced moderate pain within the first two weeks postoperatively requiring prescriptions for perocet. 2 of 29 (6.8%) had yeast infection requiring diflucan. Mean follow-up time was 34.9 months (11.7-37.4). 15 of 29 (51.7%) had no recurrence within the follow-up period. 14 of 29 (48.3%) recurred within the follow-up period. The mean time to recurrence is 23.2 months.


This small retrospective review is the first to evaluate argon beam coagulation in treating multifocal VIN III. This review indicates that ABC is comparable to other vulva organ conserving therapies. ABC retains cosmesis, and form of the vulva. This is a major advantage over surgery. Repeat treatments are also possible, which is important in a condition such as VIN, which tends to be multifocal and recurrent.


Argon beam coagulation; Vulva organ conserving therapy; Vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia

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