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An audit of cervical cytology in HIV-positive women

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Viney Wadehra, Dr Matthias Schmid


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Objective: To investigate whether a cohort of human immunodeficiency virus-positive (HIV+) women were having annual cervical cytology as recommended by the English National Health Service cervical screening programme (NHSCSP) guidelines. Methods: An audit of cervical cytology in an HIV+ cohort of 187 women by obtaining their last cervical cytology result and recall from local cytology services. Results: Of the 187 women in the audit, two were ineligible, leaving 185 women, 167 (90.3%) of whom were aged 25-64 years and eligible for screening. Of the 185 women, 126 (68.1%) had a cytology history, 50 (27%) had never had cervical cytology and nine (4.9%) had inadequate details to ascertain whether or not they had a cytology history. Of the 126 with a cytology record, 34 (27%) had a current cytological abnormality, which was low grade in 25 (19.8%) and high grade in nine (7.1%). Among women aged 25-64 years attending the clinic, these percentages were significantly higher than expected for England as a whole (P < 0.001). Of 126 women with a cytology record, 29 (23%) were overdue for their recall date and of these the previous test was abnormal in 14 (48.3%). Cytology tests were taken within the community setting in 61 (48.4%), whereas 65 (51.6%) were seen either at an HIV sexual health clinic or were under colposcopy follow-up. Of 91 women with negative cytology only 50 (54.9%) were recommended for repeat in 12 months. Conclusion: This audit demonstrates a high rate of cytological abnormalities among HIV+ women compared with the screening population at large. Implementation of NHSCSP guidelines has been difficult and requires improved care pathways between HIV clinics, primary care and laboratories.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hotonu OEO, Hussey J, Basta MST, Wadehra V, Cross P, Schmid ML

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Cytopathology

Year: 2010

Volume: 21

Issue: 2

Pages: 116-119

Print publication date: 01/04/2010

ISSN (print): 0956-5507

ISSN (electronic): 1365-2303

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2303.2009.00673.x


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