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Why this study?

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  • While women with negative pap and HPV tests are known to be at very low risk of having cervical pre-cancer or cancer, the risk associated with a single HPV positive test result in women over 30 remains unclear.

  • A few recent studies in older women show that HPV detection increases around the age of menopause. 

  • Experts are uncertain whether women over 30 with a single positive HPV test have a persistent infection or a new infection.

  • Experts disagree as to whether HPV infection clears or persists in an undetectable state until immunity is weakened due to things like illness, stress, or hormone changes.

  • As more women over 30 are tested for HPV, greater understanding of HPV infection during the perimenopausal transition is needed to provide a solid basis for counseling women in this age group with regard to HPV infection and cervical cancer risk.


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