Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Test (Cervical Cancer)
HPV is the name given to a group of more than 150 viruses that affect your skin and the cells which line your body cavities. HPV is common, and around 8 in 10 people will be infected with the virus in their lifetime.
Your check involves taking a small swab using our simple collection kit, from the comfort of your own home. Once you’ve taken and returned your sample, our laboratory will analyse your cells to check for the HPV strains which put you at a high risk of developing cervical cancer.
Although around 13 types of HPV can cause cancer, almost all cases of cervical cancer are linked to HPV, and 70% of cervical cancer cases are caused by just two types: HPV16 and HPV18. Additionally, HPV6 and HPV11 are common causes of genital warts and laryngeal papillomatosis.
Strains HPV16 and HPV18 will be reported separately. All other subtype strains tested (31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59, 66 and 68) will be reported under one heading, allowing for further management if the result is positive.
Your readings will be put into context of the normal range for your age to ascertain your levels of each HPV strain
An HPV infection will often cause no problems at all – but if you have an infection of a type linked to causing cancer which then becomes persistent, you’re at a higher risk of developing cancer. HPV infections are usually spread through sexual activity. Though you can reduce the risk of passing on or contracting an HPV infection by using protection during intercourse, this isn’t always completely effective. Although a vaccine is now offered for girls aged 11-13, it’s important to note that the vaccine does not protect against all types of HPV. This means regular screening and checking is still important even if you have had the vaccine.
All our tests have been specially designed to be convenient and non-invasive. Once you’ve booked your appointment, full preparation instructions will be provided in your confirmation email or letter. You can continue to eat and drink normally before your appointment, and you’ll also remain fully clothed throughout.