Objective: Verify the relation between HPV 16/18 antibodies and the association with cervical cytology findings in adolescents and young women.
Methods: A cross sectional study with 541 healthy and sexually active women from 15 to 25 years of age was carried on from September to November 2000. At gynecological examination, a cervical sample on liquid-base for cytology-testing and a blood sample for ELISA identification of HPV 16 and 18 antibodies were collected and sent to a reference laboratory in Belgium. Statistical analysis estimated the prevalence and prevalence ratio with a 95% confidence interval.
Results: Of these young women, 150 (27.7%) were seropositive: 79 (14.6%) to HPV 16 antibody; 35 (6.4%) to HPV 18 antibody and 36 (6.6%) to both HPV 16/18 antibodies. Cytological abnormalities were detected in 107 cases (20.5%): 63 presented with atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS), 41 were suggestive of low grade squamous intra-epithelial lesion (LGSIL) and 3 of high grade squamous intra-epithelial lesion (HGSIL). Prevalence of abnormal cytology with a positive serology was only 1.75 times that of prevalence of abnormal cytology with a negative serology. Detection of abnormal cytology was not correlated with positive serology.
Conclusion: Results of this study indicate a high prevalence of HPV 16 and 18 in young healthy women which showed no relation to the abnormal findings of cytology smears.