A major study involving over 12,000 women has shown that conservative treatment of CIN believed to be a precursor of cervical cancer can dramatically reduce the risk of full blown cancer occurring.
Researchers believe that treatment can reduce the chances by 95 per cent for up to eight years afterwards. Even so, the risk of cervical cancer among CIN patients is still five times greater than among the general population.
Researchers studied the findings from four centres around the UK, which included eight years' observation. In that time, 33 women of the 2116 being observed developed cancer, making a cumulative cancer rate of 5.8 per 1000 women. Surprisingly, the rate did not alter during the eight years.
Ideally, careful follow up is essential for up to 10 years after conservative treatment of CIN, the researchers recommend (The Lancet, 1997; 349: 978-80).