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AHRQ--Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Advancing Excellence in Health Care

Topic Suggestion Description

View Topic Suggestion Disposition (PDF) 124 kB

Date submitted: February 03, 2010

Briefly describe a specific question, or set of related questions, about a health care test or treatment that this program should consider.
For women who have pap exams, what is the effectivenes of the various testing techniques to diagnose precancerous or cancerous cervical lesions?
Does your question include a comparison of different health care approaches? (If no, your topic will still be considered.)
If yes, explain the specific technologies, devices, drugs, or interventions you would like to see compared:
Sure Path thechnique, Thin prep technique, cytology with fixative
What patients or group(s) of patients does your question apply to? (Please include specific details such as age range, gender, coexisting diagnoses, and indications for therapy.)
ages 18-45 premenopausal
high risk sexual behavior population
Are there subgroups of patients that your question might apply to? (For example, an ethnic group, stage or severity of a disease.)
African Americans, Hispanics
Describe the health-related benefits you are interested in. (For example, improvements in patient symptoms or problems from treatment or diagnosis.)
Cost effectiveness of pap collection techniques.
I would like to know which test is most accurate with diagnosing cervical cancer and is reasonable in price to test that is covered by most insurances.
Describe any health-related risks, side effects, or harms that you are concerned about.

Appropriateness for EHC Program

Does your question include a health care drug, intervention, device, or technology available (or likely to be available) in the U.S.?
Which priority area(s) and population(s) does this topic apply to? (check all that apply)
EHC Priority Conditions (updated in 2008)
  • Cancer
  • Infectious diseases, including HIV/AIDS
AHRQ Priority Populations
  • Low income groups
  • Minority groups
  • Women
Federal Health Care Program
  • Medicaid
  • Medicare
  • State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP)


Describe why this topic is important.
I feel that this topic is important for primary care physicians to be able to decide which test provides the best outcome for the patient and to inprove sensitivity to cervical cancer.
What specifically motivated you to ask this question? (For example, you are developing a clinical guideline, working with a policy with large uncertainty about the appropriate approach, costly intervention, new research you have read, items in the media you may have seen, a clinical practice dilemma you know of, etc.)
I have different pap smear techniques that are available in my office and I am often confused about which method I can use.
Does your question represent uncertainty for clinicians and/or policy-makers? (For example, variations in clinical care, controversy in what constitutes appropriate clinical care, or a policy decision.)
If yes, please explain:

Potential Impact

How will an answer to your research question be used or help inform decisions for you or your group?
It will provide substantial infomation about diagnosing cervical cancer effectively
Describe the timeframe in which an answer to your question is needed.
3 - 4 months
Describe any health disparities, inequities, or impact on vulnerable populations your question applies to.
I work in a rural community that consists of mostly under-insured population, These women do not have the required annual pap exams as suggested.

Nominator Information

Other Information About You: (optional)
Please choose a description that best describes your role or perspective: (you may select more than one category if appropriate)
  • Physician
Are you making a suggestion as an individual or on behalf of an organization?
Please tell us how you heard about the Effective Health Care Program
I heard of this program at my American Osteopathic Association Concference and through an add in my Jounal JAOA