by Christina England
November 15, 2010
A few days ago, the Daily Express ran an article which stated that cancer expert Professor Peter Sasieni recommended phasing out smear tests in favour of HPV testing. The opening statement in Victoria Fletcher’s article ‘New Cancer Check To Phase Out Smear Tests’ (http://www.express.co.uk/posts/…)read :
“SMEAR tests for cervical cancer should be phased out for all women, a top expert said.”
According to the Express Professor Sasieni, a scientist at Queen Mary, University of London, recommended smear tests should be phased out as soon as possible saying:
“Smear tests should be phased out starting as soon as possible with this being completed in five years. What further research are we waiting for? It is clear there are a number of HPV tests which are as good as cytology (smear tests) and in the long run are better.”
Professor Sasieni feels women should have HPV testing only to detect if the HPV virus is present. He believes HPV testing and vaccination should be adequate for the prevention of cervical cancer.
I spoke to two further experts who say that the HPV test plus a smear test is necessary. One of the experts I spoke to told me that Professor Sasieni is wrong in stating that we do not need more evidence.
Why would Professor Sasieni blatantly risk the lives of young women? Maybe because the mainstream media’s “top expert” is not all he appears. I have been told on good authority that he is a Ph.D. and not a medical doctor. If this is true who is he and what is role? Sasieni’s bio at Cancer Research UK (http://science.cancerresearchuk.org/research/who…) says:
“Professor Peter Sasieni is a respected researcher in the field of cancer screening. Based at the Wolfson Institute in London, he is helping to ensure that existing NHS cervical screening programme runs as efficiently as possible. He is also working to improve bowel screening for people at high risk of the disease. And he is director of a new clinical trials unit specialising in cancer screening and prevention.”
In my book, ‘helping to ensure that the NHS cervical cancer screening programme runs efficiently’ means only one thing: doing it as cheaply as possible.
“There is no data that show that an every 10 year HPV test is sensitive and specific enough to detect cervical precancers.
“The data is clear that Pap screening has done a much better job than the vaccines can do to prevent as many cervical cancers as they have, and that the vaccines will just be a way to reduce abnormal Pap tests that save money by not having the women undergo colposcopy (examination with a coloscope after abnormal smear test).
“Screening is bound to change, but the data indicate HPV testing with cytology triage at a 3-5 year interval is what we should be moving to for patient safety.”
Kenneth P Stoller M.D., whose credentials include, President of the International Hyperbaric Medical Association, a Diplomat of the American Board of Pediatrics, a Diplomat of the American Board of Hyperbaric Medicine, a Fellow of the American College for Hyperbaric Medicine, and a member of the New Mexico Medical Society, agreed:
“As of this moment: Pap smear screening is still recommended for those who have been vaccinated against HPV, since the vaccines do not cover all of the HPV types that can cause cervical cancer. Also, the vaccine does not protect against HPV exposure before vaccination.
The HPV test checks for the genetic material (DNA) of the human papillomavirus. Like a Pap test, an HPV test is done on a sample of cells collected from the cervix . So, it does not eliminate to get a smear.”