Throughout January, our team at CVMG has emphasized the importance of prevention and early detection of cervical cancer.
It’s a topic worth repeating because the American Cancer Society estimates that 14,100 new cases of cervical cancer and an estimated 4,280 deaths resulting from the disease will occur in 2022.
All women are at risk for cervical cancer. It occurs most often in those over age 30. Long-lasting infection with certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) is the main cause of cervical cancer. HPV is a common virus that is passed from one person to another during sex.
The American Cancer Society notes the two most important things one can do to prevent cervical cancer are to get the HPV vaccine if you are eligible, and to be tested regularly.
The HPV vaccine protects against the types of HPV that most often cause cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers. HPV vaccination is recommended to begin as early as age 9 and up to 18 years.
Two screening tests may help prevent cervical cancer or detect the disease early:
• The Pap test, also known as Pap smear, looks for precancers, cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated appropriately.
• The HPV test looks for the human papillomavirus that can cause these cell changes.
There are other steps you can take to help prevent cervical cancer:
• Don’t smoke.
• Use condoms during sexual intercourse.
• Limit your number of sexual partners.
Cucamonga Valley Medical Group provides cervical cancer screenings to our patients. CVMG does both HPV testing and Pap Smears. Remember to schedule your routine Pap smear and HPV testing.