Timely vaccination can help keep cervical cancer at bay
New Delhi: Women vaccinated against the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) can be effectively protected from cervical cancer with merely three PAP tests in their lifetime, suggests a new research.
Cervical cancer is the second most prevalent cancer in the national Capital, which accounting for 10.8 per cent of all cancer cases in Delhi women.
Moreover, every eight minutes, one woman in India succumbs to cervical cancer.
While the causes of cervical cancer are still debated in the medical community, "it is most commonly caused by HPV virus, with smoking cigarettes and sexual activity being considered as important factors," expert said.
He also said the incidence of cervical cancer has been observed to increase sharply with age; however, it is increasingly affecting women of 25 to 64 years of age. However, there are ways to prevent cervical cancer from happening.
Dr Dinesh Chandra Katiyar, a city-based senior consultant, said "Cervical cancer is one of the leading cancers in Indian women. Despite the best medical facilities available in the capital, we tend to overlook the symptoms. As sexual activity is considered as an important factor related to spread of cervical cancer, there is considerable stigma attached with it. It is good we have vaccination against cervical cancer."
"The prevalence of cervical cancer can be significantly reduced if girls entering teenage are vaccinated early. Vaccine works better on a child and yields effective results.
"When an adult gets vaccinated, it needs to be done through multiple shots while a child can be immunized with two shots," Dr Katiyar added.
Dr Katiyar further informed that cervical cancer has some typical symptoms, which should ring alarm bells among patients.
There is an increase in vaginal discharge or sudden loss of weight. The chronic back pain despite a healthy lifestyle is also one of the indicators. If there is inconsistency in the menstrual cycles or bloody and foul smelling discharge, you should immediately consult a doctor.
"There are high chances of curing the disease if it is diagnosed early. For diagnosing cervical cancer, pelvic examination is conducted, which includes a PAP-test. The test shows any abnormal change in the cells drawn from the patient's cervix. Tissue biopsy is also done to confirm whether the condition is cancerous", said Dr Katiyar.
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