According to recent news, Currently women are invited for screening every three to five years in the UK but Prof Peter Sasieni says that with the vaccine, there will be such dramatic reductions in cancer that the screening programme would need to change soon.
Human papillomaviruses- known as HPV are known to cause nearly all cases of cervical cancer. They do this by damaging the DNS and transform into cancerous ones if the infection is prolonged. As there are over 100 types of HPVs, it is common such that many people will be infected at one point in their lives.
The NHS therefore invites women and people with a cervix to be regularly screened. The traditional smear test is done by taking swabs of the cervix and checking for signs of abnormalities using a microscope. More recently, tests are done to check for the virus itself.
There has however been a seismic shift in preventing cervical cancer started in the UK in 2008 with the introduction of the HPV vaccine which is offered to girls (and boys since 2019) aged between 11 and 13. The vaccine is given at this time before school children become sexually active since the virus spreads by close skin-to-skin contact.
Research published in December now shows that the vaccine is cutting cervical cancer by nearly 90% in those who have been vaccinated.
Prof Sasieni, the director of the clinical trials unit at King’s College London described it as an exciting development. According to his modeling, he suggests between one to three screenings in a lifetime for persons who have been immunized. He went further to mention a new vaccine which will be used from the next school year that protects even against more types of the virus. According to him, with that a person may need just one or two screens over a lifetime.
However, the UK National Screening Committee has not made a decision about any change in future cervical cancer screening.
Prof Sasieni says that is becoming an increasingly pressing issue as the first set of people to be vaccinated are now being invited for checks. In his words, “We really want to make those changes over the next couple of years, it is a big change [but] the vaccine has been so successful this makes perfect sense.”
There are still uncertainties as it has not yet been determined how long one is protected from HPV or if there will be a need for a mid-life booster. Also, there will be need for regular screening for decades as a result of generations that have not been vaccinated.
One in three people do not come for screening when invited according to the Department of Health and Social Care.
My Cervical Cancer Was Misdiagnosed. What Do I Do?
Cervical cancer misdiagnosis can cause irreparable damage especially when you have had to stay too long and the cancer cells have continued to spread. While it is important that you go regularly for your smear test and HPV screening, it is even more important that the tests are carried out properly and the right diagnosis made.
When your GP delays or fails to carry out the required tests or inaccurately diagnoses you to be free when there are abnormalities, causing a delay in carrying out needed treatment and ultimately causing you to suffer avoidable pain, trauma, complications and leading to longer recovery time, you can make Cervical cancer misdiagnosis claims.
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First, we offer you a free consultation session, where you are very free to talk to us and tell us about your ordeal. We will make a thorough evaluation of your claims and give you free legal advice. We will also proceed to help you gather documents to serve as evidence to prove your claims.
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