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HPV urine test 'provides a simple method'

Changing the way women are tested for cervical cancer from a smear to a urine test "provides a simple method" all women can use, an expert in women's health has said.

Queen Mary University's Dr Neha Pathak told Good Morning Britain: "This provides a simple method - that they can just pee into a pot and send that off."

HPV urine test could lead to 'self-sampling'

Urine tests for HPV could boost the number of lives saved by allowing women to take part in the screening process in the privacy of their own homes, scientists have said.

Researchers behind a study on alternatives to cervical smear tests, published on thebmj.com, explained:

In well-resourced health systems, self-sampling could be used for women who are reluctant to attend for regular cervical screening.

In lower income countries that lack infrastructure, self-sampling might even be beneficial and cost effective for all women who are eligible for screening.

More research is now required to identify the true clinical performance and acceptability of urine testing for HPV in both settings.

– Spokesperson for researchers

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HPV urine test 'should be used instead of smear'

Women should have their urine tested instead of being given a cervical smear when doctors screen for the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) - an STD which can lead to cancer, experts have said.

Urine testing would encourage more women to come forward, experts said. Credit: REUTERS/Valentin Flauraud

Researchers from Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry found urine tests had "good accuracy" when it came to detecting HPV.

Of the 14 studies they examined, they found there was an 87% accuracy rate, and 94% of negative tests were correct.

Scientists hope adopting urine tests would boost HPV detection and save lives, as it is a less invasive and painful option than a cervical smear test.

Cervical cancer kills around 266,000 women globally, according to the World Health Organisation. While many strains of HPV are harmless, two of them - HPV 16 and HPV 18 - can trigger cancer.

Boys 'should be given jab' in bid to prevent cancer

Schoolboys should be vaccinated against a virus to help protect them from some types of cancer, a group of health organisations said.

Schoolboys 'should be vaccinated' against human papilloma virus. Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

The HPV jab should be used to protect against the human papilloma virus - which has been linked to a number of cancers including oral cancer.

In 2008, the HPV vaccination programme was launched in England for girls aged 12-13 to help prevent cervical cancer.

HPV Action, a group representing 25 patient and professional bodies, is calling for the vaccine to now be extended to boys and said the virus is a "real and rapidly growing health threat to UK men".

A poll of 1,300 British parents found that 64% were in favour of the vaccine being offered to boys and the organisation estimates it would cost £24 million a year for a programme including 367,000 boys.