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CERVICAL CANCER SCREENING

ANCHOR LEAD:  ALMOST ALL WOMEN CAN HAVE FEWER PAP SMEARS, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Pap smears are a screening success story, detecting cervical cancer at very early stages and enabling treatment with the best chance of success.  But now the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has changed the guidelines so most women can be safely screened less often than once per year.  Redonda Miller, an internal medicine expert at Johns Hopkins, explains.

MILLER:  I think women may, in conversation with their physician, talk about an increased interval for screening, so being screened every two to three years as opposed to every year.  I would like to reassure women that I honestly do not think that we are doing harm.  The guidelines are well-grounded in evidence especially for women above the age of 30, your chance of contracting cervical cancer diminishes markedly as long as you don’t have high risk factors such as being immunosuppressed, so women I think should embrace this guideline.           :29

Miller says women should discuss any concerns with their healthcare provider.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.



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