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At the present time it is generally agreed that carcinoma-in-situ is a recognizable stage in the development of invasive epidermoid carcinoma of the cervix, and that if the in situ lesion is not treated there is a high probability that it will progress to invasive cancer within the lifetime of the patient. It is also the consensus that the diagnosis can only be established with certainty after microscopic examination. Other diagnostic methods, notably the use of exfoliative cytology and the performance of a Schiller test as part of a careful clinical examination of the patient, are of the greatest value in finding cases of possible or probable carcinoma-in-situ, but a definite diagnosis must await histopathological study.
Terminology for the range of microscopic epithelial changes between normal epithelium and invasive epidermoid carcinoma varies from one author to another, and no system of nomenclature has as yet been uniformly adopted. Our classification
Friedell GH. Microscopic Diagnosis. JAMA. 1965;193(3):215–217. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090030037008
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