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Cervical Cancer Fast Facts

Written by Courteney

Posted on September 14, 2016 at 1:17 am

Cervical cancer is the second leading cancer that strikes women worldwide. Let’s look at some of the key facts and statistics about cervical cancer:

  • The cervix is the lower, narrowing part of a woman’s uterus. Some cervical cancers are a result of a tumor that forms there gradually.
  • Approximately 12,000 American women are diagnosed with cervical cancer annually.
  • Most cases of cervical cancer are caused by a the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) which is extremely prevalent in the United States.
  • Cervical cancer can be largely prevented with regular pap smears, screening and vaccination and also has a high treatment cure rate.
  • Women who have had many sexual partners, have HIV, use birth control for many years, or who have given birth multiple times are at greater risk of developing cervical cancer.
  • Smoking also greatly increases a woman’s risk of developing cervical cancer, among many other types of cancer.
  • Fetal exposure to the medication diethylstilbestrol (DES) that was prescribed between 1938 and 1971 has been linked to later development of cervical cancer as well.
  • Some cervical cancers are asymptomatic (they do not produce any obvious symptoms), which means it can be slowly growing in a person who isn’t getting the proper screenings to catch it
  • In some cases symptoms such as spotting (bleeding between cycles), vaginal discharge, spotting after menopause, pelvic pain during sex or at random times may indicate cervical cancer.
  • Precancerous cells detected during a pap smear can be successfully eradicated with cauterization, laser surgery or cryosurgery.
  • Undetected and untreated cervical cancer will cause approximately 4120 deaths this year.
  • If the cancer is detected early, the 5-year survival rate is encouraging at 92%.
  • It can take up to 15 years for damaged cells to replicate to the point of cancer formation.
  • Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer for women worldwide (after breast cancer).
  • There are many treatments available for precancerous cells and cervical cancer, the treatment will depend on the person and her individual case and overall health.

As this cancer can grow silently for years, the bottom line to preventing more cases of (and deaths by) cervical cancer is to get screened regularly. If you have any questions about cervical cancer or any other health-related matter, our experienced board certified physicians are standing by 24/7/365 to assist you. Thanks for visiting DocChat!

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