Story of molecular diagnosisStory of Cervical Cancer (HPV) Diagnosis

Why should I have to get tested regularly
for cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer is the second most common type of cancer found in women.
About 3,299 new cervical cancer patients found in Korea every year, and
approximately 3 cancer deaths occur every day.1,2)
In most cases, cervical cancer can be prevented through early detection and
treatment of abnormal cells found in the cervix years before
cervical cancer develops. However, many patients with cervical cancer
have no visible symptoms before their cancer exacerbates.

What are the causes of cervical cancer?

Almost all cervical cancers are caused by a virus called Human
papillomavirus (HPV). There are more than 100 different types of HPVs,
but not all types of HPV causes cervical cancer. The most common
high-risk HPV types are HPV 16 and 18, which cause about 70% of all cervical cancers. HPV 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59, 68, 73, and
82 are the other high-risk HPVs that also can cause cervical cancer.3), 4)

How do I know if I am infected with HPV when there are no visible symptoms?

The only way to determine the infection is regular cervical cancer screenings. Pap test is the conventional method to observe any abnormalities in the cervical cells, but data shows that sensitivity of Pap test is low for detection of pre-cancerous cervical lesions, therefore, molecular diagnostic testing is highly recommended for increased accuracy and efficiency of HPV screening.

Do I still have to get HPV tests even after I am vaccinated?

Gynecologists suggest regular HPV tests even after you have been vaccinated.
The currently available HPV vaccines only prevent infections with certain
types of HPVs - HPV 16, 18, 6 and 11.
Although HPV 16 and 18 are the major high-risk HPVs for cervical cancer, other
types of HPVs can also cause cervical cancer. Besides, the vaccine is not effective
if the patient is already infected with the HPV. In fact, gynecologists strongly
suggest regular HPV infection screening because several cases5) have been
reported patients with HPV infections in their cervix or with cervical cancer
even after they vaccinated.

The advantages of HPV Molecular

1. It simultaneously detects 28 HPV types.

A. 19 high-risk HPV types that can cause cervical cancer.
B. 9 low-risk HPV types that can cause infectious diseases such
as genital warts.

2. It accurately detects the exact type of HPV you are infected
with, including multiple co-infections.

3. It provides quantitative information of HPV

Natural clearing of HPV is slower with higher amount of
infected virus. Since higher viral load can also facilitate
co-infection with other types of HPVs, quantitative
information of the virus is essential for consistent monitoring
of cervical health.

What are the benefits of routine HPV test?

You can prevent cervical cancer with accurate and detailed HPV test results.

1. The Dynamics of Cervical Cancer by Lee Kyu-wan and Song Jae-yun3, J Korean Med Assoc 2007; 50(9): 762 - 8.
2. ICO Information Centre on HPV and Cancer 2014 ( /KOR.pdf)
3. Information Center > Cancer Information > Cervical Cancer
4. Nubia Muñoz, et al., Epidemiologic Classification of Human Papillomavirus Types Associated with Cervical Cancer. N Engl J Med, 2003, 348:518-27.
5. Uziel Beller, et al., Cervical Cancers After Human Papillomavirus Vaccination. Obstetrics & Gynecoogy,2009;113(2), Part 2, 550-1.

home > Support > Molecular Diagnostics