Bckground: Worldwide, 23, 000 women die of cervical cancer every year, over 80 % live in developing countries. In EGYPT, cervical cancer is the 2nd most common cancer in women after breast cancer. Cervical cytology is presently considered to be the only test known to reduce cervical cancer incidence in organized screening programs in developed countries. However, an organized screening program is difficult to implement in developing countries where resources are scarce. Visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA), as an alternative to cervical cytology, is of particular interest to developing countries because it is inexpensive, only requires supplies usually locally obtainable, and can be competently performed by nurse with proper training.
Objective: To review the evidence on VIA as a cervical cancer screening tool in terms of its sensitivity and specificity in detecting pre-invasive lesions. To evaluate how this evidence can be used to implement a feasible screening program in our locality by nurses.
Methods: To highlight and pinpoint how we give our experience to nurses in Dakhlia Governorate (Egypt) to use VIA as screening method for preinvasive cervical lesions.
Conclusions: VIA has similar sensitivity to that of cervical cytology in detecting pre-invasive lesions but has lower specificity. It is important for VIA to be evaluated further with regard to improving specificity. In resource restricted countries like Egypt, VIA may find a place as a low technology and low cost method of screening for cancer cervix.