• conventional Pap smear;
  • LBC;
  • HPV-test;
  • cost effectiveness


Many articles concerning conventional Pap smears, ThinPrep® liquid-based cytology (LBC) and Hybrid-Capture II HPV test (HC II) have been published. This study, carried out by the French Society of Clinical Cytology, may be conspicuous for several reasons: it was financially independent; it compared the efficiency of the conventional Pap smear and LBC, of the conventional Pap smear and HC II, and included an economic study based on real costs; for all the women, a “gold standard” reference method, colposcopy, was available and biopsies were performed whenever a lesion was detected; The conventional Pap smear, the LBC (split-sample technique), the colposcopy, and the biopsies were done at the same time. This study included 2,585 women shared into two groups: a group A of a high-risk population, a group B of a screening population. The statistical analysis of the results showed that conventional Pap smears consistently had superior or equivalent sensitivity and specificity than LBC for the lesions at threshold CIN-I (Cervical Intraepithelial Neoplasia) or CIN-II or higher. It underlined the low specificity of the HC II. Finally, the LBC mean cost was never covered by the Social Security tariff. Diagn. Cytopathol. 2005;33:338–343. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.