HPV Vaccine & Regular Testing Can Prevent Cervical Cancer: Studies Confirm
In India, cervical cancer contributes to approximately 6–29% of all cancers in women. Despite the alarmingly high figures, there is no nationwide government-sponsored screening program in India. While the government is making much effort to change the present condition, as individuals, it is our responsibility to know better and raise awareness. According to surveys, most Cervical Cancer cases are caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection and manifest as
The presence of cancerous cells can easily be monitored with the help of an advanced diagnostic technique called the Pap smear test. If any abnormality is detected, the test may have to be repeated in 6 to 12 months. For accurate Pap smear results, one must abstain from intercourse, using vaginal medicines or daily creams at least two days before a pap test. Also, it is best to avoid a pap test during the menstruation cycle.
HPV Vaccine can shield from viruses that cause cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers.
The recommended time to start the vaccine is when a child is 9, while it may continue through the 40s. If vaccination is started at an early age, a two-dose schedule for a period of 6 to 12 months will suffice. For people starting late, the vaccine is injected in a 3-shot series.
Apart from regular screening and vaccination, there are a few other steps that can lower the risk of cervical cancer. One of the most important factors amongst many is lifestyle habits. Those who smoke are at a higher risk of developing Cervical Cancer. Also limiting sexual partners, safe sexual practices are key points central to the cause & spread of HPV.
Awareness can combat health issues like cancer. Knowledge of healthy habits, diet, and good hygiene practices can help boost immunity against a variety of diseases. Seeking medical guidance in the early days can also save us from unprecedented mishaps. Contact your doctor now to know more about cervical cancer.