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Cervical Screening Test

Posted by Oceanside Private Practice on 17 December 2017
On December 1, 2017, the 2 yearly Pap smear test was changed to the new 5 yearly Cervical Screening Test. The old coordinated Pap smear test was introduced in Australia in 1991 under the National Cervical Screening Program, offering women between the ages of 18 and 70 a free Pap smear test every 2 years. Since then, the incidence and mortality rates due to cervical cancer have halved or dropped by 50% in Australia and has remained static over the last 10 years. This means that over the last 10 years, the number of women found to have cervical cancer and women dying from cervical cancer each year has remained the same and not dropping, proving that the Pap smear test alone is no longer effective, adequate and has reached its maximum limit as a screening test for cervical cancer.
The new and better Cervical Screening Test invites and recruits women aged 25-74 years to be tested for free every five years. The test looks for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) which causes almost all cervical cancers. The new Cervical Screening Test works in conjunction with the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccination program offered to teenage boys and girls to help reduce the incidence of cervical cancer.  New evidence shows that the new Cervical Screening Test improves early detection, reach more women (up to 30% more women) and reduce the overall rate of cervical cancer cases and deaths by another 20%. It does so by looking for the HPV that turns cervical cells into cervical cancer which is a step earlier than the Pap smear which looks at the changes of the cells of the cervix. The new test is better because it looks for the virus that causes the cervical cell changes before the changes occur so that women can have more treatment options well before the changes. Regular cervical screening is your best protection against cervical cancer.
Author: Oceanside Private Practice
Tags: Cervical cancer Cancer Screening

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