LLETZ (Large Loop Excision of the Transformation Zone) for cervical cancer

Christina S. Chu
Last Modified: February 3, 2002


Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"

I am a 24 year old with CIN III. My mum had cervical cancer 2 years ago when she was 48. I have been told that I need LLETZ (Large Loop Excision of the Transformation Zone) under general anesthetic. I understood that this was to be done under a local anesthetic and have not been able to find out why it is not the case for me. I was hoping that perhaps you could enlighten me a little.

I would also like to know if there is an increased risk of me developing cervical cancer now that I have had CIN III at a young age alongside the fact that my Mum had cervical cancer at 48. I am her only daughter and breast cancer is also very common in our family on my Mum's side.

Thank you for your time and for the wonderful service.  


Christina S. Chu, MD Assistant Professor of the Division of Gynecologic Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania Health System, responds:

You are right that LEEP (Loop Electrocautery Excision Procedure) and LLETZ (Large Loop Excision of the Transformation Zone) procedures may usually be performed in the office under local anesthesia. However, there may be a particular reason that your physician recommends general anesthesia. For example, if your anatomy makes it very difficult to visualize the cervix well, or if you found the gynecologic examination too uncomfortable, your doctor may prefer to perform the procedure while you are completely relaxed under general anesthesia. You should discuss the specifics with your physician.

I do not know of any association between the risk of developing cervical cancer and having a family history of cervical or breast cancer. Your most pertinent risk for developing cervical cancer is the fact that you have been diagnosed with CIN III. It is very important that you faithfully continue with treatment and frequent follow up as recommended by your physician.