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Key Information About Cervical Cancer

Srikanth strongly believes that prevention is better than cure. He is of the opinion that awareness is a key to prevent diseases.

Cervix is the lower part of the uterus. Cervical cancer is cancer of the cervix. It is the fourth most common cancer in women.

If no action is taken to eliminate this disease, then the annual number of new cases is expected to increase from 5,70,000 to 7,00,000 between 2018 and 2030, while the annual number of deaths is projected to rise from 3,11,000 to 4,00,000.

In 2020, more than half a million women contracted cervical cancer, and about 342 000 women died as a result – most in the poorest countries.

The World Health Organization has set goals for countries to take action to eliminate cervical cancer by 2030.

Smoking Increases Cervical Cancer Risk

key-information-about-cervical-cancer

Types

Squamous cell cervical cancer makes up about 80 percent of all cervical cancers.

Squamous cell carcinoma

Adenocarcinoma

Causes

Cervical cancer is due to abnormal growth of cells that can spread to other parts of the body

Many strains of HPV are known to cause this cancer. In more than 95 percent of the cases, the disease is caused by the human papillomavirus virus. There is no known genetic cause of this disease. However, it may run in some families.

Smoking, both active and passive, increases the risk of cervical cancer.

Symptoms

Cervical cancer is a slow-growing disease that rarely causes symptoms in its early stages.

Pain during coitus, unusual vaginal discharge and unusual vaginal bleeding are common symptoms of this cancer.

When the cancer metastasizes to other parts of the body, symptoms will be related to the region to which it spreads. For instance cough may occur if it spreads to the lungs.

Complications

In some cases of advanced cervical cancer, the tumour can cause a build-up of urine inside the kidneys, which can result in kidney failure.

If the disease spreads to nerve endings, bones or muscles it can cause severe pain.

Diagnosis

Pap test is used to diagnose this condition. Also known as Pap smear, this test looks for precancers, cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated appropriately.

Patty Cason, MS, FNP-BC notes, "Since HPV causes the vast majority of cervical cancers, testing for HPV as the primary screening test is a more effective approach to screening than cervical cytology (Pap testing)."

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Micrograph of a Normal Pap Smear

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Treatment

Treatment depends on the stage of the disease; size and shape of the tumor; and patient's age and general health.

A combination of surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy is often used to treat cervical cancer.

In early stage 1, the chance of surviving at least 5 years is 93 percent, and in late stage 1, it is 80 percent.

A research study conducted in August 2022 sought to compare the effects of abdominal nerve-sparing radical hysterectomy (ARH) and laparoscopic nerve-sparing radical hysterectomy (LRH) after a step-by-step operation on urodynamic outcomes in patients with uterine cervical carcinoma.

Study results indicated that LRH might accomplish a better avoidance of injury to the pelvic splanchnic nerve plexus bladder branch and hence more quickly recover bladder function.

Many kinds of complementary and alternative medicine have not been tested scientifically and may not be safe.

Yoga Boosts Immunity

key-information-about-cervical-cancer

Prevention

Cervical cancer is one of the most preventable types of cancer. Deaths from this cancer continue to decline.

An important thing you can do to prevent cervical cancer is to get the HPV vaccine. A single-dose Human Papillomavirus vaccine delivers solid protection against HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer.

It is recommended that you get the HPV vaccine when you are between the ages of 11 and 14. However, anyone under the age of 26 is highly encouraged to get the vaccine.

HPV vaccination can prevent more than 90 percent of cervical cancers when given at the recommended age.

Do not use tobacco products. Do yoga daily. Yoga asanas (postures) like Sukhasana prevent many cervix related diseases.

WHO's Initiative

On Nov 17, 2020, WHO launched a global initiative to accelerate the elimination of cervical cancer, and set up an historical milestone—through adoption of a resolution by 194 countries at the World Health Assembly—that pledged, for the first time, to eliminate the malignant disease by pursuing three important steps: vaccination, screening, and treatment.

As a part of the global strategy to eliminate cervical cancer by 2030, WHO has directed all countries to reach and uphold an incidence rate of below four per 100,000 women through vaccination of 90 percent of eligible girls, screening of 70 percent of eligible women at least twice in their lifetime, to efficiently treat 90 percent of those with cervical precancer lesions and provision of treatment and palliative care for invasive cancers.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2020 Srikanth R

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