The HPV Test That May Be Better Than a Pap Smear

Research shows how effective HPV testing is.

Typically the pap smear is given at every annual gynecologist visit to make sure all cervical cells are normal and healthy. If there are abnormalities, that could be an indication of the human papillomavirus (HPV) which could eventually lead to the development of cervical cancer. 

New research has shown that a specific test for HPV, rather than a pap smear, is more efficient and accurate when it comes to detecting cervical cell abnormalities. In recent years getting both an HPV test and a pap smear in one visit was recommended. But with this new research, many experts are calling for the pap smear test to be removed from practices altogether. Other experts disagree, claiming that the pap smear is still necessary to assess the full scope of the cervix and both tests should remain in practice. Even with the debates, there is no doubt that the HPV test is beneficial to women's health to prevent the number of cervical cancer cases from increasing. 


Related: 

How Cervical Cancer Starts

What to Expect from a Gynecologist Visit (at Every Age and Stage)

The Connection Between HPV and Cancer

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