Doctors will soon be able to predict earlier whether a woman is at risk of developing cervical cancer by using a new test, say scientists, Metro reports.
Nearly all cervical cancers – 99 per cent – are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) meaning women who contract it need to be regularly monitored.
As there are more than 200 types of HPVs associated with varying degrees of cancer, the process of diagnosis and treatment can become complicated.
However, researchers have come up with a new approach that not only detects the type of HPV infection, but also indicates precancerous markers.
The new test, called HPV RNA-Seq, may enable doctors to diagnose even the riskiest types of the infection, provide quick low cost results and avoid unnecessary diagnostic procedures. It can even identify patients with precancerous lesions in the cervix, revealed the study published in The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics.
Researchers believe it may also be useful for other HPV-associated cancers, such as anal cancer and head and neck cancer.