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The changing landscape for cervical screening

Annabelle Farnsworth
Med J Aust 2008; 189 (1): 6-7.
Published online: 7 July 2008

Cervical cancer screening needs to take into account a partially vaccinated population and new technologies

A national, well funded and organised program of screening using the conventional Pap smear has significantly reduced the incidence of and mortality from cervical cancer in Australia.1 While the program has been in place, there has been a great increase in knowledge of the pathogenesis of cervical cancer, with certain oncogenic subtypes of human papillomavirus (HPV) shown to be a necessary cause for development of this disease.2 In addition, a national program of vaccination against two of the 15 oncogenic viruses began in April 2007, and tests to detect HPV are now available. Furthermore, research showing that new technologies for screening cervical samples are superior to conventional cytology has also been published.3,4

  • Annabelle Farnsworth

  • Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology, Sydney, NSW.

Correspondence: afarnsw@dhm.com.au

Competing interests:

I have received travel assistance to attend meetings from Cytyc, the manufacturer of the ThinPrep Imaging System.

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