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945 Elderly women’s experiences of self-sampling for HPV testing
  1. R Hermansson,
  2. M Olovsson,
  3. C Gustavsson and
  4. A Lindstrom
  1. Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden


Introduction/Background*Self-sampling for Human Papillomavirus (HPV) testing, as an alternative to the conventional speculum based sampling, is highly acceptable to women of screening ages. The aim of this study was to describe older women’s (60 to 75 years) experiences of self-sampling.

Methodology In Sweden a descriptive study with quantitative and qualitative methods was designed to collect data from a survey of women who participated in self-sampling for HPV testing at home. Individual interviews were done with women who tested positive in the first self-sampling, and were either negative in their second HPV test or were positive in their second HPV test, but without precancerous lesions or cancer.

Result(s)*Of eligible women, 97.2% answered the survey. Among the surveyed women, 49.2% reported it was very easy to perform self-sampling, 46.8% answered it was easy and 2.0% answered it was not easy. A majority (58.9%) answered that they prefer self-sampling, 16.5% that they prefer sample collection by a healthcare provider, 23.7% did not have any preference and 0.9% did not answer the question. In the interviews, 13 of 16 invited women participated. Most of them reported that they prefer self-sampling because it was easy to perform, less embarrassing and less time consuming than a visit to a clinic. The majority of women reported that they were not worried when informed about having an HPV positive test. Participating women with better knowledge about the significance of an HPV infection were more worried about having a positive HPV test.

Conclusion*Cervical cancer remains a highly preventable disease through screening and early treatment. Our results indicated that vaginal self-sampling for HPV testing was a well-accepted method for cervical cancer prevention in this group of older women.

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