The most common screening method for human papillomavirus (HPV) is a Papanicolaou (Pap) test, also known as a smear test. This involves a doctor or nurse scraping cells from the opening of a woman’s cervix, before sending them to a laboratory to be analyzed for abnormalities.

The American Cancer Society claim that between 1955 and 1992, death rates from cervical cancer fell by almost 70% due to increased Pap testing. But despite this success, screening uptake in recent years has been low.

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