New research could change a woman’s annual visit to the doctor

Augusta (WJBF)—New research could change a woman’s annual visit to the doctor making it faster and more importantly, easier to diagnose disease. Right now, doctors at the Medical College of Georgia are studying a new form of cervix test that is similar to the Pap smear. The benefit of this new method is how quickly doctors get results.

Most women get a Pap smear once a year, some every six months. The pap smear is the standard of care for testing a women’s certix. The Pap smear takes a few days to show results. This new biomarker test that is being studied at MCG shows results after a few minutes.

Pamela O’Neil was the first patient in the country to receive this new form cervix test. When doctors at MCG asked her if she would like to participate in the study, she responded with a resounding “yes.”

Doctors in China have used the technology; however, MCG is the first site in the United States to use it. Doctor Daron Ferris is the lead doctor for the study. He explains how the test works.

“We put a little solution on a probe,” Dr. Ferris describes. “Then, we simply touch the cervix for 15 seconds. We then place the probe in a spectrophotometer or an analyzer and within 2 minutes, it tells us if there is an abnormality or not and then depending on the position of the probe and the color, we can determine where the disease might be.”

Dr. Ferris says, often women come in for a pap smear, then in the next few days when the doctor tries to reach them about negative results—the patient cannot be found. This new biomarker test allows doctors to test, get results, and start a treatment plan all in the same visit.

MCG will enroll 800 women in the study of this technology. Dr. Ferris says they are comparing the biomarker to the traditional Pap test and HPV test. “It could be that this is actually going to work just as well,” says Dr. Ferris. If it does, this opens up more treatment opportunities for women around the world.

Pamela O’Neil was so impressed with the new test and the study itself, she wants to be a spokesperson for it!

“The anticipation is so much, it’s blown out of proportion and we do that to ourselves. We make it so big when it’s just so little and I would love to get that across to women. You know, you come in for a 10 minute test and the relief!”

She hopes her experience helps other women get tested, get treated, and get healthy.

The study just started and it is totally free to enroll. You will be helping the University with their research and you can also get your annual check out of the way.

To enroll, call—706-721-2535.

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