Wednesday, April 1, 2015
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The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recommended replacement for the Pap test and pay more attention to a DNA test developed by Roche.
Pap test has been preventing women from cervical cancer for 60 years. It is like a ritual to them. On the other hand the newly developed DNA test has been approved by FDA for use as a primary screening tool.
Professor at John Hopkins University, Dr Dorothy Rosenthal, said the cervical cancer deaths have stopped declining in the US and it would be fruitful by moving to the new test.
In the new test developed by Roche, DNA of human papillomavirus, or also known as HPV and is responsible for almost all the cervical cancer cases, is tested. In the Pap test lab experts examine a cervical sample by looking for abnormalities with the help of a microscope.
Until now the newly developed test has been either used parallel with Pap test or as a follow-up of the Pap test.
A committee of gynecologists, microbiologists, pathologists voted 13-to-0 yesterday for the new test and it now gets all the required permission to start with initial test for women 25 and older.
However, experts say the phasing out of the Pap test won’t be quick as it has been highly successful. The new DNA test would be just another option and not a replacement as of now to the Pap test and probably doctors will adopt only when professional societies recommend it in guidelines, and this would take years.