Friday, March 11, 2011

Cervical Ca Screening Age Limits Questioned

By Charles Bankhead, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

A substantial portion of cervical cancer occurs in women older than 70, raising questions about clinical recommendations to discontinue screening at that age, analysis of an NCI database suggested.

From 2000 to 2006, more than 12% of newly diagnosed cervical cancers were in women ages 70 to 85. The rate was similar to that in age groups more often associated with the disease, according to a study reported here at the Society of Gynecologic Oncology meeting.

Almost 60% of cervical cancer cases in older patients were diagnosed at later disease stages.

That limits their treatment options, said Malgorzata E. Skaznik-Wikiel, MD, of Magee-Womens Hospital in Pittsburgh. "Lack of uniform screening across all at-risk age groups may account for the discrepancy," Skaznik-Wikiel said.

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