J Cancer Prev.  2021 Mar;26(1):25-31. 10.15430/JCP.2021.26.1.25.

Promotion of Cervical Screening among Long-term Nonattendees by Human Papillomavirus Self-sampling

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Skåne University Hospital, Lund University, Lund, Sweden
  • 2Department of Medical Microbiology, Laboratory Medicine Region Skåne, Lund University, Lund, Sweden

Abstract

Cervical cancer is preventable through gynecological screening. To promote participation among non-attending women, self-collected vaginal samples for detection of high-risk human papillomavirus (hr-HPV) is an option. The aims of this study were to investigate the response of self-collected vaginal samples for hr-HPV testing among long-term non-attendees, to explore the attendance at follow-up among HPV-positive women, and to analyze the prevalence of hr-HPV and severe cervical dysplasia or cancer among the responders. A vaginal self-sampling kit was sent to 19,766 women aged 30-70 years who had not provided a cervical screening sample for ≥ 7 years in Skåne, Sweden. The self-sample was analyzed by the Aptima HPV mRNA assay (Hologic). Women testing positive for HPV were invited for follow-up. The response was 18.5% (3,646/19,757). The prevalence of HPV mRNA was 11.3% (412/3,636). Among HPV-positive women, 85.7% (353/412) attended follow-up, and of these, 44.8% (158/353) had HPV in the cervical sample. The HPV mRNA test of self-samples showed a positive predictive value of 9.3% ([33/353], 95% CI = 6.5-12.9) for detection of cytologically severe dysplasia. Histologically severe dysplasia or cancer was detected in 0.88% ([32/3,636], 95% CI = 0.6-1.2) among responders, including two cervical- and one vaginal cancer. In conclusion, almost one fifth of the long-term non-attendees participated in self-collected vaginal hr-HPV sampling. The prevalence of histologically confirmed high grade squamous intraepithelial lesion or cervical cancer was not increased significantly compared to regularly screened women in Sweden. The relatively high HPV prevalence among the self-samples indicates the importance of diagnostic follow-up with cervical HPV testing and reflex-cytology of HPV-positive cases.

Keyword

Uterine cervical neoplasms; Screening; Human papillomavirus; Self-sampling; Long-term non-attendees
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