Background: Human papillomavirus infections of the cervix are found with varying frequencies in different populations worldwide, and have been associated with cervical cytologic abnormalities. Methods: We studied 1,603 randomly selected Hispanic, Native American, and non-Hispanic White women in New Mexico to determine the prevalence of cervical HPV infection in these ethnic groups, and its association with Pap smear abnormalities, using a new commercial dot-blot hybridization assay. Results: Nine percent of all women screened had evidence of cervical HPV infection (13.7% of non-Hispanic White women, 9.7% of Hispanics, and 6.6% of Native American women). Prevalence was higher in younger women ages 14-19 years than in older age groups. Over half of women with cervical HPV infection (n = 145) had normal Pap smears. The proportion of infected women increased among those with more advanced cytopathologic abnormalities; 5.6 percent with normal Pap smears had cervical HPV vs 66.7 percent with moderate-severe dysplasia. Conclusions: Cervical HPV infection is common among New Mexico clinic attendees, varies in prevalence among the three major ethnic groups, and is strongly associated with cervical cytopathologic abnormalities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health