As with any screening test, an HPV test carries the risk of false-positive or false-negative results.
March 27, 2015
- False-positive. A false-positive test result indicates that you have a high-risk type of HPV when you really don't. A false-positive result could lead to an unnecessary follow-up procedure, such as colposcopy or biopsy, and undue anxiety over the test results.
- False-negative. A false-negative test result means you really do have an HPV infection, but the test indicates that you don't. This might cause a delay in appropriate follow-up tests or procedures.
- Making sense of your Pap and HPV test results. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/pap/default.htm. Accessed March 2, 2015.
- HPV and HPV testing. American Cancer Society. http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/othercarcinogens/infectiousagents/hpv/hpvandhpvtesting/index. Accessed March 2, 2015.
- Human papillomavirus: Genital HPV infection fact sheet. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/STD/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm. Accessed March 2, 2015.
- Palefsky JM. Epidemiology of human papillomavirus infections. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 2, 2015.
- Pap test fact sheet. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.hhs.gov/opa/reproductive-health/general-reproductive-health/pap-test. Accessed March 3, 2015.
- Pap and HPV testing. National Cancer Institute. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/cervical/pap-hpv-testing-fact-sheet. Accessed March 3, 2015.
- Laughlin-Tommaso SK (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic. Rochester, Minn. March 13, 2015.
- Algorithms: Updated consensus guidelines for managing abnormal cervical cancer screening tests and cancer precursors. American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology. http://www.asccp.org. Accessed March 13, 2015.
- Cervical cancer prevention and early detection. American Cancer Society. http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/moreinformation/cervicalcancerpreventionandearlydetection/cervical-cancer-prevention-and-early-detection-cervical-cancer-screening-guidelines. Accessed March 13, 2015.