Colposcopemethods are used in all oncology centers of the world, especially inregions such as the U.S., U.K. and Italy. Colposcope is a generalmedical imaging method to visually examine both the vagina and cervixwith a hand lens equipped with a high magnification lens, called acolposcope while exploring the cervix and the ovaries with a lesspowerful lens, called a cauterizing lens. The primary objective ofthe colposcopeis to prevent new cervical cancer by identifying and treatingprecancerous lesions before cancer spreads to the uterus. Thisexamination is sometimes combined with other tests, such as a pelvicexam and ultrasonography (using a small telescope). A colposcope isone of the most useful tools physicians have in their arsenal forviewing the reproductive organs.
Todetermine the issue some tests are done first, such as an ultrasound,which can determine the quality and shape of a woman's vagina andvaginal discharge. Other tests, such as a colposcope, will be used toview the structures and organs of the uterus, cervix, and ovaries.The results from these tests will help the doctor to understand thehealth of the woman's reproductive system.
Theuse of colposcopes has improved dramatically over the past century.Today, many doctors are able to take complete medical histories,including regular exams of the woman's reproductive organs, through asingle examination. In previous years, medical records were not asreadily available as they are today. Although many procedures havebeen developed to improve the process of obtaining a woman's medicalrecords, the basic procedure of using a colposcope still remains thesame. In regions, such as the U.S., the prevalence of cervical cancerhas increased the requirement for advanced medical treatments such ascolposcopy. For instance, according to the American Cancer Society,in 2021 around 14,480 cases of cervical cancer will be diagnosed andaround 4290 women will die from the disease.
Theusual procedure for a colposcope is for the doctor to insert a handlens into the vaginal cavity through the vagina before performing anyother test. The scope is guided through the uterus by a trainedveterinarian and safely reaches the ovaries and uterus. By examiningthe ovaries, the doctor can make an informed diagnosis of cancer inthese areas. The uterus is surrounded by the vaginal discharge, whichis in turn documented.