Large loop excision of the transformation zone (LLETZ) is the preferred treatment for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia due to its effectiveness and ability to be performed in an outpatient setting under local anaesthesia (LA). Although current guidelines recommend that most LLETZ can be performed under LA, there is paucity in clinical data of patients’ perspectives of outpatient LLETZ.
Determining patient acceptability of outpatient LLETZ through assessment of anxiety and pain scores, and comparing treatment outcomes with current standards in terms of margins status, negative histology, short‐term morbidity rates and follow‐up attendance.
Materials and Methods
This study was conducted at a tertiary hospital over two years (2014–2016). Patients undergoing outpatient LLETZ completed a three‐part questionnaire (before, immediately after and 4–6 weeks post‐procedure).
One hundred and five patients underwent outpatient LLETZ. Mean pain score was 2 (range 0–8). Pre‐procedure anxiety was common but most resolved post‐procedure. Women who did not have a prior LLETZ discussion were more likely to report moderate‐severe anxiety levels pre‐procedure, compared with women who did (odds ratio 3.00, 95% CI 1.11–8.09, P = 0.030). There were no differences found in pain scores when comparing pre‐procedure anxiety levels, prior discussion of LLETZ or mode of anaesthesia. Specimen margins were involved in 42.9%. No association was found between positive cervical margin status and age, pre‐procedure anxiety or post‐procedure pain scores. Most patients were satisfied and attended follow‐up appointments.
Large loop excision of the transformation zone under LA is a well‐tolerated procedure with high satisfaction and follow‐up rates. Clinicians need to initiate early discussions regarding treatment to minimise procedure‐related anxiety.