Roles of Sonography and Hysteroscopy in the Detection of Premalignant and Malignant Polyps in Women Presenting with Postmenopausal Bleeding and Thickened Endometrium


Background: To assess the role of sonographic endometrial thickness and hysteroscopic polyp size in predicting premalignant and malignant polyps in postmenopausal women. Materials and
Methods: A total of 328 postmenopausal women with abnormal uterine bleeding and thickened endometrium underwent operative hysteroscopy due to detection of endometrial polyps were included in this retrospective study. Preoperative endometrial thickness measured by transvaginal ultrasonography and polyp size on hysteroscopy were noted. Hysteroscopic resection with histology was performed for endometrial polyps. Endometrial thickness and polyp size were evaluated on the basis of final diagnosis established by histologic examination. Receiver operator characteristic curves were calculated to assess the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value and diagnostic accuracy of endometrial thickness and polyp size for detecting pemalignant and malignant polyps.
Results: Premalignant and malignant polyps were identified in 26 (7.9%) of cases. Sonographic measurement showed a greater endometrial thickness in cases of premalignant and malignant polyps when compared to benign polyps. On surgical hysteroscopy, premalignant and malignant polyps were also larger. Endometrial thickness demonstrated a sensitivity of 53.8%, specificity of 85.8%, PPV of 24.6% and NPV of 95.6% at a cut-off limit of 11.5 mm with diagnostic accuracy of 83.2%. Polyp size has a diagnostic accuracy of 94.8% with a sensitivity of 92.3%, specificity of 95.0%, PPV of 61.5% and NPV of 99.3% at a cut-off point of 19.5mm.
Conclusions: Endometrial thickness measured by transvaginal ultrasonography is not sufficient in predicting premalignant and malignant endometrial polyps in postmenopausal women with abnormal uterine bleeding and thickened endometrium. Polyp size on hysteroscopy is a more accurate parameter, because of better sensitivity and specificity. However, while polyp size ≥19.5mm seems to have a great accuracy for predicting premalignancy and malignancy, histologic evaluation is still necessary to exclude premalignant and malignantpolyps.