Cervical cytologic screening and early management of abnormal pap smears played an important role in reducing invasive cervical cancer incidence and mortality over the past decades. Despite widely available cost effective screening for cervical cancer in the United States, women in lower socioeconomic groups and minorities continue to suffer from a higher incidence and mortality from cervical cancer and national goals have not been met. The biological, psychosocial, and cultural barriers that contribute to these disparities will be reviewed. This article also reviews current screening methodologies, treatment algorithms and newer developments that hold additional promise for the future of cervical cancer prevention.
Keywords: cervical cancer, pap test, human papillomavirus, infection
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