DoH issues cervical cancer guidance for GPs

Guidance for early diagnosis of cervical cancer has been issued by the DoH.

RCGP chairman Professor Steve Field welcomed the new cervical cancer guidance
RCGP chairman Professor Steve Field welcomed the new cervical cancer guidance

The guidance will help GPs identify and diagnose young women with cervical cancer, health minister Ann Keen announced today.

A new algorithm will assist GPs in managing patients that present with abnormal bleeding and will re-iterate NICE guidelines on gynaecological symptoms.

RCGP chairman Professor Steve Field welcomed the new guidance.

‘It is a really positive step that will assist us in making earlier diagnoses for younger women aged 20-24, which will in turn improve the outcomes for those at risk, and ultimately save lives,' he said.

Professor Field added that the cervical screening programme was helping to save thousands of lives every year.

The Advisory Committee on Cervical Screening (ACCS) had reported delays in diagnosis as young women under the age of 25 visiting their GP with abnormal bleeding did not receive a full pelvic examination.

England's national clinical director for Cancer Sir Mike Richards said: ‘To help GPs follow the correct procedure we have produced a pathway which maps the steps they need to take when women aged 20-24 present with post-coital bleeding and bleeding between menstruation.'

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