20 September 2017

New  Pap Smear Guidelines and Changes for 2012

According to the new Pap smear guidelines for 2012, women should get screened for cervical cancer far less frequently than doctors have long last recommended. More than 12,000 women contract cervical cancer every year in the United States and more than 4,000 die from the disease. And for years, doctors have recommended that women start getting Pap smears every year or two to try to catch signs of cancer early, when the disease is easiest to prevent and treat.

Previously it was thought that screening should start either at age 21 or three years after the onset of sexual activity. But after reviewing the latest scientific substantiation, the American Cancer Society concluded that annual screening is not necessary and, actually, was harmful. Most women should wait until they turn 21, and then only get tested every three years if everything looks fine, according to the new guidelines. This is the first time that doctors are saying they recommend against annual screening.

Reasons for Changes in the Pap Smear Guidelines

There are a several reasons for this change in these guidelines. First, cervical cancer is so rare in young women that there is no reason to start screening any earlier. And even when women mature, cervical cancer grows so slowly that there is no harm in waiting longer between tests. In fact, if you compare the advantage of annual screening to screening every three years with the Pap test the findings are almost nothing.

Experts profess that more frequent testing can cause real issues. The Pap tests often produce false alarms, which lead women to endure further procedures to make sure there is no cancer. And, according to these experts, possibly repeating the follow-up procedures over and over again may damage the cervix, causing serious problems later if women want to have children. One problem can include preterm labor and then the birth of a premature infant or low birth weight infant.

The guidelines also state that women age 30 and above can get the Pap test along with a test for the human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted virus that can cause cervical cancer. If both tests are negative, then most women can wait at least five years to get the tests again, according to the new guidelines for 2012.

The addition of this HPV test alongside the Pap test adds much more accuracy to the result that screening more frequently than five years will again be more harmful and not more beneficial. The new guidelines also recommend women 65 and over stop getting screened all together as long as they have no other systems.

For further information on Pap smear and cervical cancer screening, please call Dr. Joanne Hinson at 801-364-4030. Dr. Hinson has been serving women from the Salt Lake City area and beyond for over 25 years, and is here to serve today. Please call and make a same day or next day appointment immediately.

Why Choose Dr. Hinson

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Passionate about her vision. Treating women as people, respecting their value as females, and as people.

25 years of OB/GYN experience, acting as the only doctor for most of her patients , treating other medical needs as well.

Emphasizes a partnership with the patient in her health care, strongly advocating her responsibility in her health.

Focused, nonjudgemental listener, effective communicator and educator.

Considers the patient's overall health, mental state, and social issues as possible factors contributing to her present problems.

Considers the female body as a whole, not just the pelvic region.

Committed to staying current with changing guidelines and treatment options.

Continuously updating skills with emphasis on minimally invasive and in-office procedures.

More About Dr. Hinson

For 25 years Dr. Joanne S. Hinson has provided compassionate healthcare to the women of Salt Lake City, Utah and beyond. From puberty to menopause, Dr Hinson provides the best personalized GYN services… caring for the whole woman.

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