Volume 89, Issue S2 p. S30-S37
Articles

Training for cervical cancer prevention programs in low-resource settings: Focus on visual inspection with acetic acid and cryotherapy

P.D. Blumenthal

Corresponding Author

P.D. Blumenthal

JHPIEGO, Baltimore, 1615 Thames Street, Baltimore, MD 21231-3492, USA

Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA

Corresponding author. Tel.: +1 410 537 1913; fax: +1 410 537 1473.Search for more papers by this author
M. Lauterbach

M. Lauterbach

JHPIEGO, Baltimore, 1615 Thames Street, Baltimore, MD 21231-3492, USA

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J.W. Sellors

J.W. Sellors

PATH, Seattle, WA, USA

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R. Sankaranarayanan

R. Sankaranarayanan

International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), Lyon, France

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First published: 04 March 2005
Citations: 78

Abstract

The modern approach to cervical cancer prevention, characterized by use of cytology and multiple visits for diagnosis and treatment, has frequently proven challenging and unworkable in low-resource settings. Because of this, the Alliance for Cervical Cancer Prevention (ACCP) has made it a priority to investigate and assess alternative approaches, particularly the use of visual screening methods, such as visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA) and visual inspection with Lugol's iodine (VILI), for precancer and cancer detection and the use of cryotherapy as a precancer treatment method. As a result of ACCP experience in providing training to nurses and doctors in these techniques, it is now widely agreed that training should be competency based, combining both didactic and hands-on approaches, and should be done in a clinical setting that resembles the service-delivery conditions at the program site. This article reviews ACCP experiences and perceptions about the essentials of training in visual inspection and cryotherapy and presents some lessons learned with regard to training in these techniques in low-resource settings.