Qvintip® is a self-sampling device with a detachable tip, that allows women to collect a vaginal fluid sample in the comfort of their own home, and tell whether they are at increased risk of cervical cancer.
Today, Qvintip has been used by over 100 000 women. Qvintip is CE marked and is registered with the Swedish Medical Products Agency as a class 1 medical device.
HPV (human papillomavirus) is a sexually transmitted virus that is passed on through genital contact (such as vaginal and anal sex). There are over 100 different kinds of HPV and not all of them cause health problems. However some kinds of HPV can cause cancer of the cervix, vagina, and/or vulva. Most of these problems are caused by HPV types 6, 11, 16 or 18.4
Women aged 20 or above that want to be active about monitoring their health and ensure they don’t get cervical cancer should take the test. Testing for high-risk HPV is especially important for women that do not have regular smear tests − 65% of cervical cancer sufferers have not had a smear test.
Women aged above 65, who are no longer covered established screening programs, will also benefit from HPV self-sampling at home. Women that are HPV-positive in middle age are often carrying long-lasting infections, which may have caused cell damage.
Even if you have regular pap smears, HPV tests offer extra security − 25% of the women that get cervical cancer each year had normal results in their most recent smear test (1). Smear tests aren’t as sensitive as HPV-tests.
The greatest benefit is knowing whether or not you’ve got a high-risk HPV infection. It’s also easy and convenient − you can self-sample in the comfort of your own home, when it suits you, without having to undergo a gynaecological examination (reference 2).
If you follow the instructions for use provided for Qvintip, you can be sure you’ve sampled correctly. This type of self-sampling has today been performed by thousands of women who have all self-sampled successfully (3). You’re always welcome to contact us if you’ve got any questions.
If the results are normal and the test shows no high-risk HPV then there’s no need for any short-term follow-up. But it’s important to take a test regularly because the virus spreads through sexual contact.
Firstly, it’s important to remember that infection with high-risk HPV does not mean you already have cell changes or cervical cancer. Most infections clear up spontaneously as a result of our immune defenses. If the test shows that you have an HPV infection, we recommend that you contact your gynaecologist.
The gynaecologist is most likely to do a colposcopy, which literally, takes a closer look at the cervix. A colposcopy examines the cervix through a microscope, checking for any abnormalities. If anything suspicious is identified, the gynaecologist can take a biopsy − a small piece of tissue − and send it to a lab for analysis.
There are different methods for treating cell changes, all based on removing the changed cells. One common procedure is called conisation, which is the removal of a small conical portion of the cervix. It is an out-patient procedure performed under local anaesthetic. Patients go home straight afterwards.
If your HPV test was negative, i.e. with no HPV virus found, the risk for cervical cancer is neglible. However, new infections can occur after new sexual contact and it’s important to detect them as early as possible. Studies have shown HPV tests should be performed at least every 5 years, more often if you are genetically exposed or have other diseases which may influence cancer development.