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Prevalence of histological abnormalities in hysterectomy specimens performed for prolapse. A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Nicholson, Rachel C, Khunda, Aethele, Ballard, Paul, Rees, Jon and McCormick, Carol (2021) Prevalence of histological abnormalities in hysterectomy specimens performed for prolapse. A systematic review and meta-analysis. International urogynecology journal. ISSN 1433-3023

Item Type: Article


The practice of histopathological assessment of the uterus following hysterectomy for benign indications including pelvic organ prolapse (POP) surgery is common and often routine. While pathology is not anticipated, the finding of pathology requiring further action is always a concern, in particular CIN (cervical intraepithelial neoplasia) or cervical/uterine malignancy. We aimed to perform a systematic review to understand the prevalence of actionable uterine and cervical pathology in hysterectomy specimens performed for POP. A literature search was performed in January 2020 of MEDLINE, Embase and CINAHL using the Healthcare Databases Advanced Search platform. Included studies reported CIN and/or uterine/cervical malignancy in histological assessment of hysterectomy specimens performed purely for POP. Meta-analysis of prevalence was performed using the MetaXL ( ) add-in for Microsoft Excel. Six hundred seventy-seven records were identified, out of which 34 studies were eligible. Overall prevalence (95% confidence interval [CI]) of endometrial cancer in 33 studies was 0.004 (0.003-0.006), I  = 41%, number needed to treat (NNT) 1:250. Total actionable uterine pathology was 0.005 (0.003-0.006) in 33 studies, I  = 35%, NNT = 1:200. Overall prevalence of cervical cancer in 19 papers was 0.001 (0.000-0.002), I  = 18%, NNT = 1:1000. In 16 studies the overall prevalence of CIN was 0.013 (0.001-0.033), I  = 95%, NNT = 1:77. Prevalence of total actionable pathology was 0.013 (0.006-0.0023), I  = 86%, NNT = 1:77. The risk of actionable pathology is low, but not negligible. The variation between populations is wide. The prevalence of finding such pathology supports the routine practice of sending all hysterectomy specimens performed for POP for histological assessment.

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Additional Information: ** From PubMed via Jisc Publications Router ** History: received 14-09-2020; accepted 12-05-2021.
Uncontrolled Keywords: CIN, Histology, Hysterectomy, Malignancy, Meta-analysis, Prolapse
SWORD Depositor: Publication Router
Depositing User: Publication Router


Item ID: 13637
Identification Number:
ISSN: 1433-3023
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Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Jon Rees: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2021 15:39
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2021 15:39


Author: Jon Rees ORCID iD
Author: Rachel C Nicholson
Author: Aethele Khunda
Author: Paul Ballard
Author: Carol McCormick

University Divisions

Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellbeing > School of Psychology

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