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Two Studies Focus on Factors Related to Colposcopy

Younger women more apt to have colposcopic biopsy after Pap; biopsies not linked to new HPV

MONDAY, Oct. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Younger women in an underserved population had a particularly high likelihood of colposcopic biopsy after cervical cancer screening compared to a repeat Pap test, and multiple biopsies during colposcopy were not associated with a higher risk of new human papillomavirus (HPV) infections, according to the results of two studies published in the November Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Katrina F. Trivers, Ph.D., of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from more than 950,000 women in the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program for underserved women. Four percent had a repeat Pap test within nine months, and 6 percent had a colposcopic biopsy. Women ages 18 to 20 and 21 to 29 were more likely to receive colposcopic biopsy instead of repeat Pap compared to older women.

Philip E. Castle, Ph.D., of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md., and colleagues analyzed data from 988 women who underwent colposcopy and weren't diagnosed and treated for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 2 or more severe lesions. After controlling for age, baseline HPV status, and new sexual partner during follow-up, having two or more biopsies versus one was not associated with acquiring new HPV infection in the following six months.

"Better disease ascertainment by taking more biopsies among screen-positive women provides both patients and clinicians greater reassurance that follow-up rather than aggressive management is warranted when disease is not found. In support of taking more biopsies, we found no evidence in this study for a theoretical concern," Castle and colleagues write.

A co-author of the second study has received support for HPV studies from Roche Molecular Systems and GlaxoSmithKline.

Abstract - Trivers
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Abstract - Castle
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