Human papilloma virus infection in dysplastic cervical smears based on the presence of koilocytes: a study of 280 cases.
In order to estimate the frequency of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) infection among patients and women attending the Family Planning Clinics and having dysplastic cervical epithelium, a retrospective examination of cytology slides was undertaken at Kenyatta National Hospital's (KNH) Cytology Laboratory. All slides with a diagnosis of slight dysplasia or greater were re-evaluated by the author. Only slides received between 1st January 1983 and 31st December 1987 were included. Observation of koilocytosis in at least one cell was taken to represent HPV infection. A total of 280 cases met the inclusion criteria during the said period. 78 (20%) of these showed evidence of HPV infection. Examination of Papanicolaustained cytology slides for the presence of koilocytes is not the most accurate method of detecting HPV infection but it does demonstrate that the prevalence of koilocytes is higher in dysplastic cervical epithelium than in the general population which is estimated to be about one per cent. HPV is generally believed to be a significant aetiologic agent in the development of cervical cancer in Kenya and should be under surveillance through cytology smear examination.