Diagnostic dilation and curettage: a reappraisal

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1982 Jan 1;142(1):1-6. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9378(16)32276-1.


Diagnostic dilation and curettage (D & C) is widely considered to be the method of choice for obtaining samples of endometrium for histologic examination, although the scientific basis for this assumption is elusive. Despite extensive use of D & C, the tissue yield and diagnostic accuracy of this technique have not been adequately evaluated. More is known about these features of a newer diagnostic procedure, Vabra aspiration (VA). VA also appears to be safer, less expensive, and more convenient than D & C. Until the alleged benefits of diagnostic D & C can be shown to outweigh its risks and costs (approaching one billion dollars per year in the United States alone), D & C probably should not be the primary procedure used for obtaining most samples of endometrium.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Costs and Cost Analysis
  • Diagnostic Errors
  • Dilatation and Curettage / adverse effects
  • Dilatation and Curettage / economics*
  • Endometrium / pathology*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Metrorrhagia / therapy
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Uterine Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Vacuum Curettage / economics