How Can Women Avoid the Danger of Cervical Cancer?
How can women prevent cervical cancer?
Cervical Cancer is when abnormal cells that are found in the cervix turn into cancer cells. This cancer is mostly caused by the human papillomavirus, or more commonly known as HPV. Women could have HPV for years and not even know it, because sometimes it does not show any symptoms. A few symptoms to watch out for would be bleeding from the vagina that is abnormal, pain during sex, bleeding during sex, and discharge from the vagina that includes blood. Cervical Cancer is more common with women over the age of 30, but it is never to early to start thinking abut getting tested for this disease. Women today may think this test is something they should keep putting off but if you are over the age of 21 or if you have been sexually active for more than three years, you should take some time to get this quick test.
The test is called a Pap Test, or more commonly known as a Pap Smear. A Pap Smear is a quick test taking at the most 5 minutes. The doctor will have you lay on an examining table, and using a speculum will open the vagina to see the cervix. After the cervix is seen, the doctor will use a special brush to collect a few cells and send them off to the lab for testing. Also during the Pap Smear a doctor does a quick pelvic exam to check the uterus and ovaries for any imperfections.
The next step after the Pap Smear would be waiting to hear about your results. If everything is fine, your doctor will usually send out a generic letter saying everything checked out fine and you can come back in a year. The other circumstance is if they find something on your Pap Smear. If this happens the doctor is in contact with you to make you aware that abnormal cells were found on your Pap Smear and that you have to come in for a biopsy, and a colposcopy. A colposcopy is a test used to see a magnified and illuminated view of the cervix to look for the lesions or abnormal cells. To highlight these cells the doctor will use a solution, and any lesion will be illuminated. After viewing this the doctor will take a biopsy, which is the removal of a small piece of tissue, and they will send the tissue off to see if the abnormal cells are at a mild state. If this is so the doctor will recommend more frequent Pap Smears to make sure that the cells stay at the mild state, these tests would range from every 3-6 months, until you get a few normal Pap Smear in a row. If the Biopsy comes back with cells in a higher abnormal state, then your doctor will recommend what treatment plan is best for you to handle this disease.
Women can avoid getting Cervical Cancer, it is all about early detection. The earlier you can catch this cancer, it may be easier to get rid of this disease. If you can keep up with your yearly Pap Smears, the chances of the cancer being caught in an earlier stage are higher so it can be easier to get rid of.