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Can Cervical Cancer Be Prevented?

You may have heard about the new Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine that can help prevent cervical cancer? This is something that is marketed towards teenage girls in the hopes that they will not develop

Cervical gland showing an area of high grade e...

Cervical gland showing an area of high grade epithelial dysplasia (CIN3). Asymptomatic patient, biopsy taken after a routine PAP smear was found to be abnormal. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

some types of this cancer. You may not think you are at risk, but even older women can have problems with this. At times, it can be deadly, or at the very least, it can cost a woman the opportunity to have a baby of her own. The vaccine is helpful, but it is not the only way that a woman can try to prevent getting cervical cancer. The alternative is to do a few important things and to start doing them at an early age.

The vaccine on the market can help prevent cervical cancer, but you should know that it does not cover all types of cancer of the cervix. Unfortunately, there are a few different ones and the vaccine is known to work with only one or two of these types. That means it is not always 100 percent helpful, but it can be for some girls. As a parent, it is a good idea to research this vaccine and talk with the doctor about it. In some cases, and ounce of prevention is the key, but not always. It certainly can not hurt to have the vaccination if it has been proven safe.

Some parents do not want to allow their daughters to get this vaccine that can prevent cervical cancer in some girls. They feel that if their daughters have this shot, they will feel protected and will not get the right type of medical attention. There is some truth to this, that is why it is important to discuss the power and the limitations of such a shot. While it can help, routine pap smears are still essential to good health. As stated, this shot only works with one or two types of cervical cancer, which means pap smears are important to check for the other types. If girls understand this and parents take them to appointments when needed, this problem can be eliminated.

If the shot is not something that parents choose for their daughters, routine pap smears become even more important in an effort to prevent cervical cancer. These appointments should be kept each year and follow up is important. Many times a result of ‘irregular cells’ may come up – which can indicate cervical cancer. However, that is not always the case. When this happens, a medication is prescribed and a follow up is necessary. For most girls, the follow up with come up clean and there will be no more problems. If cancer is a possibility, it is important to know it and get quick treatment to better the chances of survival.

There is no way to totally prevent cervical cancer, but you can do all that you can to lower your chances. This means routine medical care, the vaccination if appropriate, and taking any abnormalities very seriously. Some women still get cancer and have to go through treatment and there may never be anything that can be done about that. However, taking your health seriously can mean something is caught early and treated effectively. Cervical cancer is different from other types, so learning about it can go a long way towards preventing cervical cancer for some girls and women.