Kaiser Says HPV Screenings, Pap Smears Can Be Performed On Same Tissue

Has Obtained FDA Approval For New Procedure

A new study conducted by physicians with Kaiser Permanente has concluded that pap smears and HPV testing can be conducted simultaneously, possibly streamlining the delivery of preventative cervical cancer care in the future.

            Kaiser researchers performed both pap smears and HPV testing from the same preservative fluid on more than 850 patients. They concluded that both tests could be performed from the same cervical cell tissue sample, as opposed to conducting separate tests on separately collected specimens and sending them to different laboratories. HPV is the most commonly transmitted sexually transmitted disease and is the primary cause for cervical cancer.

            “This test not only allows healthcare providers to identify more women at highest risk for developing cervical cancer and to intervene earlier, but knowing the specific HPV type empowers providers to be more effective and accurate in their education and counseling of patients. This could lead to greater patient understanding as well as improved compliance with surveillance and treatment,” said Christina Hong, M.D., a study co-author and assistant chief of service of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at Kaiser Permanente Orange County.

            The data collected by the physicians was used to obtain approval last year from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to conduct both tests using the same sample. The study data was recently published online by the Journal of Clinical Pathology.

            “The opportunity to move toward primary HPV screening would not have existed with the method we currently use,” said the study’s lead author, Devansu Tewari, M.D., a gynecologic oncologist at Kaiser Permanente in Orange County. “As future studies build upon this one, that potential of primary HPV screening is within reach. It is one of many ways we are working to enhance cervical cancer screening.”

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