Carcinoma of the cervix and cervical cytology: a short epidemiological review
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Carcinoma of the cervix is an important disease of well-documented epidemiology but uncertain cause. It causes appreciable morbidity and mortality in all countries, including Zimbabwe, with a significant load on curative services. Epidemiology and the role of cytology are reviewed. Cytology screening programmes have suffered from an inability to cover whole populations, particularly less affluent and/or socially disadvantaged groups, which are most at risk. Despite this difficulty, the magnitude of the problem makes it necessary to continue its study. In particular, efforts are needed in developing countries to study incidence, to better define high risk groups and to devise economical ways of detecting more cases in the earlier stages.