A history of cervical cancer screening

100% of cervical cancer or pre-cancer is missed in early stage

1920s

No screening existed. Cervical cancer was detected late through symptoms, which usually meant a death sentence.

up to50% of women with pre-cancers may be missed by annual Pap smear test

1940s

Introduction of screening. Testing based on Pap smear which reduced the number of cervical cancer deaths dramatically, but many women were not diagnosed properly.

About 10% or fewer with pre-cancer missed with new screening tests

2000s

New screening approach based on molecular tests.
2010s: HPV test detects high-risk HPV to identify those women at greatest risk of developing cervical disease.
Mid-2000s: New biomarker tests detect transforming cells due to HPV infection to identify where immediate intervention is beneficial and to provide conclusive diagnoses of cervical disease.