How we can keep striking out cervical cancer
In the 1970s, cervical cancer was a common cause of cancer death for American women. Today? Death rates are down because we can detect cervical cancer, often before it even develops and when treatments are most successful. Plus, many young women are now protected against the most common cause of cervical cancer, human papilloma virus (HPV), when they get the HPV vaccine.
The materials outline how we are conquering cervical cancer and include age and other guidelines for Pap tests, the HPV vaccine, plus these proven ways to help prevent cervical cancer:
- Have boys and girls ages 11 and 12 get the HPV vaccine (catch-up vaccine recommended for those ages 13 to 26).
- Discuss the HPV test option with your physician.
- Don't smoke.
- Use condoms during sexual intercourse.
- Limit your number of sexual partners.
- For women: Get regular Pap tests starting at age 21 and ask your doctor how often you need one.