Women who are thinking about their goals for the new year should start the year off right by getting screened for cervical cancer, especially if it’s been awhile since your last screening, or you’ve never had it done. Getting screened regularly for cervical cancer is important for all women because that is the most effective way to find the disease early so it can be treated. It is highly treatable when it is found early enough, but in order to find it, women have to get screened.
Who does cervical cancer affect?
Cervical cancer most often affects women over the age of 30. Almost 13,000 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer this year in the United States and more than 4,000 women will die from the disease. In Idaho in 2015, an estimated 45 women were diagnosed and 17 women died from cervical cancer.
Who is most at risk?
Almost all cervical cancers are caused by the human papillomavirus, or HPV. HPV is a common virus that can be passed from one person to another during sex. Those who become sexually active at an early age or who have several sexual partners are at a greater risk, but anyone who has ever had sex is at risk for HPV. Not getting screened or being HIV positive increases a woman’s risk for cervical cancer, and smoking doubles it. Continue reading