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Editorial
August 21, 2018

Screening for Cervical Cancer: New Tools and New Opportunities

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Schmidt College of Medicine, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida
  • 2Pima County, Tucson, Arizona
  • 3College of Public Health, University of Arizona, Tucson
JAMA. 2018;320(7):647-649. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.11004

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women worldwide and disproportionately affects women in low-resource countries lacking a public health infrastructure to support cancer screening.1 The slow rate of progression from precursor lesions to invasive cancer provides opportunities for early detection and cure. Cervical cancer incidence in the United States has declined substantially over the past half century. In 2018, 13 240 new cases of cervical cancer and 4170 cervical cancer deaths are projected to occur.2 What is unique about US mortality attributable to this neoplasm is that the vast majority of deaths will occur among poor women, women from communities of color, non–US-born women, and women living in rural and remote settings. In general, these populations have limited access to preventive medical care, including screening and timely follow-up, prompt diagnosis and treatment, and culturally tailored education and outreach.

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