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Know More About Cervical Cancer

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Smita Vats 90% (227 ratings)
FICMCH, Diploma In Laproscopic Surgery, Certified in Laparoscopy & Hysteroscopy, DNB (Obstetrics and Gynecology), MBBS
Gynaecologist, Gurgaon  •  20 years experience
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Hello, my name is Dr Smita Vats and I am a consultant Gynaecologist in Gurgaon. Cancer of the cervix is the second most communist cancer of a woman in India every year almost one hundred and twenty thousand women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and out of these almost 67477 women eventually succumb to the disease. So that indicates almost of the mortality of 50% because by the time the diseases diagnosed, it has usually progress to an advance stage. Ironically it is also one of the Cancer for which we have very good screening test available as well as we do have a vaccine available which protect against the development of cervical cancer in most women. The causes of cervical cancer can be many and the most often it is caused by early onset of sexual activity, multiple sexual partners, repeated pelvic infection smoking alcohol but by large the most communist cause of development of cervical cancer is infection with human papillomavirus which is responsible for almost 70% of the cases of cervical cancer. The virus is available in almost is present in almost 100 types of strains and of these almost 15 to 16 types of strains are high risk strains, that is infection with these 16 types of strains will develop will lead to development of cervical cancer in most women who have been infected with these types of strains. The virus is transmitted by sexual activity and as India becomes more and more liberated sexually the younger girls and young women are at a higher risk of developing cervical cancer because they are more vulnerable to the infection with human papillomavirus. The good news is that there is a good vaccine available against the infection from human papillomavirus and it is usually given to young girls between the age of 9 to 15 years of age in the form of two doses even as intramuscular injections 6 months apart. And if the vaccination can also be extended to women up to the age of 26 years in which case, it may be given in the form of 3 doses 0, 1 and 6 months apart and similarly for immuner compromise women the vaccination is also recommended. Beyond the age of 26 years ideally their best method to protect against the cervical cancer is regular screening with Pap smear at maybe 3 yearly interval and if it all it is combined with HPV DNA testing it can done once in 5 years. If the facility for Pap smear or HPV DNA testing is not available then regular periodic examination of the cervix in the form of visual examination by an experienced doctor, also helps in early detection of the disease and prevention of a development of an advanced Cancer. India contributes to almost 25% of the cases of cervical cancer in the world and developed countries like US and UK have been successful in reducing the insolence of cervical Cancer significantly with the development of vaccine and the development of protocols for regular screening by Pap smear and visual examination also. So there is no reason why we in India cannot decrease the incidence of cervical cancer if you follow the regular protocols. So for protection against cervical cancer following basic practices are required to follow safe sexual practices to take early treatment for any kind of vaginal discharge, irregular bleeding or bleeding after intercourse or any kind of abnormal menstrual bleeding. Please visit a gynaecologist on time and a part from these regular Pap smears and HPV DNA testing should be recommended to most women who are sexually active and for any further information you can discuss in details with your gynaecologist or you can send your queries to me through


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