I certainly agree that more access to cervical cancer screening is important. I work in a country where women are still dying of cervical cancer everyday because of lack of education and at times the medical professionals taking so long to do surgery because they are waiting for the biopsy 6 months later. I am at a hospital where through a partnership with Australia, we are able to do Pap Smears and Colposcopy biopsies without the pts having to pay a huge fee. This has given the pts we see an access to care, but this isn't everywhere in Papua New Guinea, and so a lot of women are suffering. This articles suggests screening at age 30-35. I have seen women at 21 yrs old with Stage 3 cervical cancer that is inoperable. In my setting where polygamy is common and women are married at an early age, if we would wait until 30 to screen, we would be missing a lot of cancers. I am fortunate to work with a surgeon who is willing to go right from exam to surgery without a bx, as the pts just don't always have the time to wait for a month or more for the path to come back, but not everyone is as fortunate.
Link leads to: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3514709.html
Summary: On the basis of new data and the results of earlier research conducted in 20 African, Asian and Latin American countries, the ACCP partners summarize and share key findings and recommendations for effective cervical cancer screening and treatment programs in low-resource settings in this 6-page article.
Source: International Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health
Publication Date: September 1, 2009
Languages: English, Spanish
Keywords: Alliance for Cervical Cancer Prevention, cancer, cervical cancer, cervix, HPV, human papillomavirus, Risk Factors & Prevention, screening