Longitudinal analysis of carcinogenic human papillomavirus infection and associated cytologic abnormalities in the Guanacaste natural history study: Looking ahead to cotesting

Sarah Coseo Markt, Ana C. Rodriguez, Robert D. Burk, Allan Hildesheim, Rolando Herrero, Sholom Wacholder, Martha Hutchinson, Mark Schiffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


Background. Few studies have addressed the timing of cervical cytologic abnormalities and human papillomavirus (HPV) positivity during the course of an infection. It remains largely unknown how infections detected by HPV and cytology wax and wane relative to each other. The aim of this analysis was to assess the longitudinal relationship of abnormal cytology and HPV positivity in a 7-year prospective study of 2500 women in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Methods. At each semiannual or annual visit, cervical specimens were screened using liquid-based cytology and tested for >40 HPV types with use of MY09/MY11 L1 degenerate primer polymerase chain reaction-based methods. On the basis of previous work, we separated prevalent and newly detected infections in younger and older women. Results. Among newly detected HPV- and/or cytology-positive events, HPV and cytology appeared together ∼60% of the time; when discordant, HPV tended to appear before cytology in younger and older women. Combining newly and prevalently detected events, HPV and cytology disappeared at the same time >70% of the time. When discordant, HPV tended to disappear after cytology in younger and older women. Conclusions. Detection of HPV DNA and associated cytological abnormalities tend to come and leave together; however, when discordant, detection of HPV DNA tends to precede and/or last longer than associated cytologic abnormalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)498-505
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Infectious Diseases

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