A study published in the Lancet found an at-home test for human papillomavirus (HPV) to be very effective and could be particularly useful in regions where women do not have access to pap tests, used to diagnose the infection. According to the researchers, the do-it-yourself tests were four times more likely to detect cases of cervical cancer and three times more likely to identify pre-cancerous cells, or cervical intraepithelial neoplasia.
Attila Lorincz, one of the researchers, stated, "Unlike many forms of disease, we can actually prevent cervical cancer-but only if women have access to screening or if younger girls are vaccinated against the virus...Our findings show that women are happy to take the test and that it is very sensitive at picking up women who are at risk of developing cancer. This sensitivity is vital for a woman who may only get tested once or twice in her life." Nevertheless, the researchers noted that the test produced more false-positives than tests administered at a doctors' office, and they called for more research concerning at-home HPV screening. The study examined over 20,000 women between the ages of 25 and 65.
The Journal of the American Medical Association (AMA) reports that over one-third of American women are infected with the human papillomavirus (HPV) by the age of 24. While the majority of HPV strains are benign, some strains can cause cervical cancer and genital warts. About 2.2 percent of infected women have a strain that is high-risk for cervical cancer, the recent research finds. Gardasil, which prevents cervical cancer and genital warts caused by HPV types 6, 11, 16, and 18, was approved by the FDA in June 2006.
Media Resources: National Partnership for Women and Families 11/3/11; The Lancet 11/2/11; Reuters 11/1/11; Feminist Daily Newswire 10/26/11
12/11/2013 Human Rights Day Celebrated Around The World - Yesterday marked International Human Rights Day, a day to celebrate human rights advances and to assess the challenges that lie ahead in protecting them.
"The fundamentals for protecting and promoting human rights are largely in place: these include a strong and growing body of international human rights law and standards, as well as institutions to interpret the laws, monitor compliance and apply them to new and emerging human rights issues," said United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay in a statement. . . .
12/11/2013 UConn Under Federal Investigation For Mishandling Sexual Assault Cases - The US Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) informed the University of Connecticut on Monday that it will investigate the school for allegedly mishandling sexual assault cases and violating Title IX, the federal law that requires all recipients of federal financial assistance for education programs and activities to prohibit sex discrimination and sexual harassment [PDF].
The investigation was sparked after seven women filed a formal complaint in October alleging that UConn had failed to protect them from sexual assault and exposed them to a sexually hostile environment.One woman says her attacker was expelled from campus but later readmitted without her knowledge. . . .
12/11/2013 Massachusetts Democrat Katherine Clark Wins Congressional Seat - Democrat Katherine Clark will become the fifth woman to represent Massachusetts in the US House Tuesday, after easily defeating three opponents in a special election.
"Six years ago, there wasn't a single woman representing Massachusetts in Congress," said Niki Tsongas, the only other woman representing Massachusetts in the House. . . .