Worldwide Facts About Cervical Cancer
Monday, January 7, 2013
Cervical cancer is the No. 1 women’s cancer in sub-Saharan Africa and is the third most common cancer in women worldwide, with 530,000 new cases and 275,00 deaths annually.
Cervical cancer occurs in the cells of the cervix, the lower part of the uterus that connects to a woman’s vagina. Various strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted infection, are the culprits in causing most cases of cervical cancer.
Most women’s immune systems prevent the HPV virus from turning cancerous. In a small percentage of women, however, the virus survives for years, and, if not detected and prevented, some cells on the surface of the cervix turn into cancer cells.
Tests and Diagnosis
Pap test can detect abnormal cells in the cervix, including cancer cells and cells that show changes that increase the risk for cervical cancer.
HPV DNA test involves collecting cells from the cervix for medical laboratory testing. HPV tests may be combined with Pap tests to extend the recommended screening period from three to five years for women between the ages of 30 and 65. For more information, go to the 2012 Cervical Cancer guidelines.
Other Web Resources for Information about Cervical Cancer: