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CIN is graded depending on how deep the cell changes go into the surface of the cervix.
This is when one-third of the thickness of the surface layer of the cervix is affected.
This is when two-thirds of the thickness of the surface layer of the cervix is affected.
This is when the full thickness of the surface layer of the cervix is affected.
Knowing the grade of your CIN helps your colposcopist plan the best treatment for you.
With all three grades of CIN, often only a small part of the cervix is affected by abnormal changes.
CIN 3 is also known as carcinoma-in-situ. Although this may sound like cancer, CIN 3 is not cervical cancer. Cancer has developed when the deeper layers of the cervix are affected by abnormal cells. However, it’s important that if CIN 3 is picked up during screening tests, plans are made to treat it as soon as possible.
Content last reviewed: 1 October 2012
Next planned review: 2014
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© Macmillan Cancer Support 2013
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