The Facts: Cervical Cancer Screening

Patient attending to patient

Part of living a good life is being in good health; spirit, soul, and body. While you are putting the right clothes, the best weaves and the most exotic perfumes on that body, you have to take care of what is going on inside. If you want to be here to enjoy your hard work and you want to stay as long as you can to be there for those you love then you have to be healthy. One of the important bits about staying healthy is preventing the really dangerous diseases.

Cancer is scary but it is not impossible to defeat and early detection is key. Cervical cancer happens when cells in the cervix grow in an uncontrollable way and build up to a tumour. As the tumour grows, cells can eventually spread to other parts of the body and become life-threatening. Cervical screening involves taking a small sample of cells from the surface of the cervix. I know this sounds very technical but I have just had this done recently, it is more an odd feeling than pain. If you have had a vaginal swab taken before to check for infections the procedure is similar. The sample is sent to a laboratory and checked under a microscope to see if there any abnormal cells.  These abnormal cells can develop into cancer if they are left untreated. Depending on the outcome of the test, your sample may be tested for the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) that can cause cancer.

It is estimated that 6 out of 100 women will have abnormal cells. This does not automatically equal HPV but further tests are carried out. A normal result means all is well but you will be advised to screen in every three years if you are aged between 25 to 49 years and every five years if you are aged 50 to 64.

No need to fear ladies, just to keep you on top of things.