Cervical cancer surveillance in women with learning disabilities
Nova Science Publishers, Inc.
Faculty of Computing, Health and Science
School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Science
Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among women world-wide. Objective: Evaluation of cervical cancer risks, frequency and screening uptake in women with learning disability (LD). Method: Review of the literature. Results: Few data are available on the risks of cervical cancer among women with LD, but those available suggest a lower incidence and the presence of fewer risk factors. Uptake of screening in this group is as low as 7%. A number of factors contribute to low uptake, including ineligibility based on comprehension and physical disabilities, as well as a general perception that women with LD are sexually inactive and therefore not at risk. Conclusion: More data are needed to evaluate the incidence of cervical cancer among women with LD, preferably disaggregated by sexual activity. The subgroup who are sexually active should be actively recruited into screening programmes. Further research is also needed on the consequences of a positive screening result and how women with LD cope with a diagnosis of cancer.