Screening of Anal Cancer

Executive Summary

The screening of Anal cancer among the patients is integrated by determining the initial signs and symptoms related to the disease. Anal cytology test (anus smear) is carried out among such individuals who do not have any signs and symptoms for anal cancer but are prone to the risk of contacting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Other laboratory tests are also conducted among the individuals regularly for diagnosing anal cancer.

Screening methods of Anal Cancer

Screening of Anal Cancer is used to check for cancer before symptoms or signs appear. Scientists are developing and developing tests that can screen people for specific types of cancer. The broad goals for early detection of cancer are:

  • Reduce the number of people who die of illness or eliminate the total number of deaths from cancer.
  • Reduce the number of people who develop illness

Screening of Anal Cancer is done to detect cancer as early as possible in people who are not yet showing signs of the disease. Anal cytology is an ongoing test that doctors can use for people who do not have symptoms of anal cancer but are at high risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as HPV or HIV ​1​. Because this test is similar to a Pap smear, which detects cervical cancer, it is also called an anus smear or an anal smear. The doctor takes a sample of your anal lining. These cells are then examined in the laboratory under a microscope to see if early cellular changes could lead to cancer or have already developed.

Some health care providers recommend routine use of this test in people at high risk of developing anal cancer. If you are in any of the following groups at a higher risk of anal cancer, talk to your healthcare provider about screening for anal cancer ​2​.

  • HIV patients.
  • People who have regular anal sexual intercourse.
  • People who show anal Vulgaris or precancerous cell proliferation around the anus.
  • Show abnormal cell proliferation caused by HPV in another part of the body.
  • The immune system is impaired by autoimmune disease, transplant recipients, or long-term use of drugs that weaken the immune system. 
  • It is important to discuss whether your doctor or other medical professionals and anal cytology are suitable for you.


  1. 1.
    Chiao E, Giordano T, Palefsky J, Tyring S, El S. Screening HIV-infected individuals for anal cancer precursor lesions: a systematic review. Clin Infect Dis. 2006;43(2):223-233. doi:10.1086/505219
  2. 2.
    Goldie S, Kuntz K, Weinstein M, Freedberg K, Palefsky J. Cost-effectiveness of screening for anal squamous intraepithelial lesions and anal cancer in human immunodeficiency virus-negative homosexual and bisexual men. Am J Med. 2000;108(8):634-641. doi:10.1016/s0002-9343(00)00349-1