The human papillomavirus test (HPV) test could improve the (cost-) effectiveness of cervical screening by selecting women with a very low risk for cervical cancer during a long period. An analysis of a longitudinal study suggests that women with a negative Pap smear and a negative HPV test have a strongly reduced risk of developing cervical abnormalities in the years following the test, and that HPV testing lengthens the detectable stage by 2-5 years, compared to Pap smear detection alone.

British Journal of Cancer
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Van Den Akker-van Marie, M.E, van Ballegooijen, M, Rozendaal, L, Meijer, C.J.L.M, & Habbema, J.D.F. (2003). Extended duration of the detectable stage by adding HPV test in cervical cancer screening. British Journal of Cancer, 89(10), 1830–1833. doi:10.1038/sj.bjc.6601355