Aim: To compare prevalence of anxiety in women with abnormal cervical cytology (Pap) undergoingcolposcopy to that of women attending the outpatient clinic for check-up and to examine predicting factors.Materials and
Methods: In this cross-sectional analytical study, 100 women with abnormal cervical cytology(abnormal Pap group) and 100 women who attended our outpatient clinic for check-up (control group) wererecruited from June 2013 to January 2014. The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was employedto determine anxiety in the participants with the score of ≥ 11 suggestive of clinically significant anxiety. Theprevalence of anxiety and the mean HADS scores for anxiety were compared between the groups. For those withabnormal Pap, association between clinical factors and anxiety was assessed. A p-value of < 0.05 was consideredsignificant.
Results: Median age was different between the groups, 44.0 years in the abnormal Pap group and50.0 years in the control group (p=0.01). The proportion of participants who had more than one sexual partnerwas higher in the abnormal Pap group, 39.2% vs. 24.7% (p=0.03) and the prevalence of anxiety was significantlyhigher 14/100 (14.0%) vs. 3/100 (3.0%) (p < 0.01). The prevalence of depression was comparable between thegroups. The mean HADS scores for anxiety and depression subscales were significantly higher in the abnormalPap group, 6.6 vs. 4.8 (P < 0.01) and 3.9 vs. 3.1 (p=0.05), respectively. For the abnormal Pap group, no definiteassociation between clinical factors and anxiety was demonstrated.
Conclusions: The prevalence of anxiety inwomen with abnormal Pap awaiting colposcopy was significantly higher than that of normal controls. Specialattention including thorough counselling, with use of information leaflets and psychological support, should bedirected to these women.