Vinegar as a Screening Tool in the U.S.

September 4, 2013
Sandra Swain, MD

Sandra Swain, MD, medical director of the Washington Cancer Institute at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, discusses the utility for vinegar as a screening tool in the U.S.

Sandra Swain, MD, medical director of the Washington Cancer Institute at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, discusses the utility for vinegar as a screening tool in the U.S.

In a cluster-randomized study that analyzed 150,000 women in Mumbai, India, vinegar (acetic acid) demonstrated to be an adequate screening tool for cervical cancer.

Swain believes that the use of vinegar as a screening tool has a greater implication in developing countries with no resources and probably will not be adopted in the U.S.

Clinical Pearls

A recent study found that a DNA test was superior to vinegar, though screening was only done once. In the Mumbai study, screening was done four times every two years. The idea of an inexpensive DNA test is being examined, Swain says.

  • Swain says vinegar has little utility as a screening tool for cervical cancer in the U.S.
  • Research is being conducted looking at an inexpensive DNA test
  • The Mumbai study has more implication for developing countries