Study Finds Women College Students Are Foregoing Pap Smear Tests

A new study by researchers at Florida International University in Miami finds that many women college students are not familiar with risk factors for cervical cancer and had not had a Pap smear – the screening procedure for the disease.

According to the American Cancer Society, in the U.S., it is estimated that 11,150 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer, and approximately 3,670 will die of it. While cervical cancer was once the number one killer of women from cancer in the United States, the invention of the Pap test in the 1940s has helped saved countless lives and it is now the 12th deadliest cancer among women.

More than 60 percent of the participants in the FIU survey had not had annual checkups within a year, and 69 percent of the participants had never received a Pap test. College students cited procrastination, lack of interest, and fear as reasons for being tested.

“Cervical cancer is one of the most preventable cancers, and knowledge is the key to its prevention,” said Nasar U. Ahmed, associate professor in the department of epidemiology at Florida International University and the principal investigator of the study. “Screening for this cancer is done during an annual checkup that a majority of these students did not receive. Knowledge and simple practice of a regular doctor’s visit can prevent this disease and save many lives.”

Filed Under: Research/Study


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