Facts and information about cervical cancer by courtney johnson and mike adkins
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Facts and information about cervical cancer by courtney johnson and mike adkins

Facts and Information About Cervical CancerByCourtney Johnson and Mike Adkins

What is cervical cancer
What is Cervical Cancer

Cancer that forms in tissues of the cervix (the organ connecting the uterus and vagina). It is usually a slow-growing cancer that may not have symptoms but can be found with regular Pap tests.

The cervix
The Cervix

The cervix is part of a woman's reproductive system. It is the lower, narrow part of the uterus (womb). The uterus is a hollow, pear-shaped organ in the lower abdomen. The cervix connects the uterus to the vagina. The vagina leads to the outside of the body.

The cervix1
The Cervix

The cervical canal is a passageway through which blood flows from the uterus through the canal into the vagina during a menstrual period. During pregnancy, the cervix is tightly closed to help keep the baby inside the uterus. During childbirth, the cervix dilates (opens) to allow the baby to pass through the vaginal canal.

Symptoms of cervical cancer
Symptoms of Cervical cancer

  • Abnormal bleeding

  • Unusual heavy discharge

  • Pelvic pain

  • Pain during urination

  • Bleeding between regular menstrual periods, after sexual intercourse, douching, or pelvic exam

How common is cervical cancer
How common is cervical cancer?

  • Worldwide, cervical cancer is the second-most-common type of cancer that strikes women.

  • Cervical cancer is the 14th most common cause of new cancers diagnosed among women.

  • About 11,150 women in the United States developed cervical cancer and about 3,870 will die from it this year.

How common is cervical cancer1
How common is cervical cancer?

  • Most common in women younger than 50

  • Rarely in women younger than 20

  • About 20% of women over 65 are diagnosed

  • Cervical cancer occurs more frequently in Hispanic women

What contributes to cervical cancer
What contributes to cervical cancer?

  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)

  • Low socioeconomic status

  • Smoking

  • Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV)

  • Chlamydia infection

  • Diet

  • Birth control pills

  • Family history of cervical cancer

Understanding cancer
Understanding Cancer

  • Cancer begins in cells, the building blocks that make up tissues. Tissues make up the organs of the body.

  • Normally, cells grow and divide to form new cells as the body needs them. When cells grow old, they die, and new cells take their place.

Understanding cancer1
Understanding Cancer

  • Sometimes, this orderly process goes wrong. New cells form when the body does not need them, and old cells do not die when they should. These extra cells can form a mass of tissue called a growth or tumor.

  • Tumors can be benign or malignant.

Benign tumors
Benign Tumors

  • Benign tumors are rarely life-threatening.

  • Generally, benign tumors can be removed, and they usually do not grow back.

Benign tumors1
Benign Tumors

  • Cells from benign tumors do not invade the tissues around them.

  • Cells from benign tumors do not spread to other parts of the body.

  • Polyps, cysts, and genital warts are types of benign growths on the cervix.

Malignant tumors
Malignant Tumors

  • Are generally more serious than benign tumors and may be life-threatening.

  • Malignant tumors often can be removed. But sometimes they grow back.

Malignant tumors1
Malignant Tumors

  • Cells from malignant tumors can invade and damage nearby tissues and organs.

  • Cells from malignant tumors can spread (metastasize) to other parts of the body.

Malignant tumors2
Malignant Tumors

  • Cancer cells spread by breaking away from the original (primary) tumor and entering the bloodstream or lymphatic system.

  • The cells invade other organs and form new tumors that damage these organs. The spread of cancer is called metastasis.

Human papillomavirus hpv
Human papillomavirus (HPV)

  • Genital HPV infections are very common, affecting up to 80 percent of women by the age of 50.

  • HPV by itself is not a disease. Most infections go away or are suppressed by the body, without causing any symptoms or health effects.

Human papillomavirus hpv1
Human papillomavirus (HPV)

  • There is no treatment for HPV itself, only for abnormal cells that may form if an infection becomes long-lasting.

  • There is currently no HPV test for men, and it is impossible to know from whom you got the infection or when.

Human papillomavirus hpv2
Human papillomavirus (HPV)

  • Medical research suggests that after you get a particular type of HPV, you become immune to it and cannot be re-infected with that same type again.

Human papillomavirus hpv types
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Types

About 30 types of HPV are spread only through direct genital contact. These "genital" types of HPV are either “high-risk” or “low-risk”

Human papillomavirus hpv types1
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Types

1) "high-risk" – which means they can cause certain kinds of cancer (most commonly, cervical cancer) if the infection persists

Human papillomavirus hpv types2
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Types

2) "low-risk" – which means they are not associated with cancer, but can cause genital warts. Unless you develop one of these problems, the only way to know whether you have HPV is by being tested.

Human papillomavirus hpv symptoms
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Symptoms

HPV cause visible genital warts. In women, these growths may develop inside the vagina, where they are hard to detect or can also develop on the lips of the vagina or around the anus.

Human papillomavirus hpv symptoms1
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Symptoms

In men, they usually appear on the penis, the scrotum or around the anus. Very rarely, growths can be found in the mouth or the throat.

Human papillomavirus hpv symptoms2
Human papillomavirus (HPV)Symptoms

Depending on the type of HPV, some women have infections that cause abnormal cell growth (dysplasia) on the female cervix. A woman may only find out she has HPV when her annual Pap smear results indicate abnormal cervical cell changes.

Abnormal cell growth

Healthy Cervix

Hpv statistics
HPV statistics

  • Approximately 5.5 million people are newly infected with genital HPV each year and about 20 million people are currently infected.

  • Some studies estimate that 50% to 75% of the sexually active population are exposed to at least 1 strain of HPV, although most people don't develop symptoms.

Hpv statistics1
HPV statistics

  • At least 50 percent of sexually active men and women acquire a genital HPV infection at some point in their lives. By age 50, at least 80 percent of women will have been infected with genital HPV infection.

Hpv statistics2
HPV statistics

  • Every women that contracts HPV will not develop cervical cancer

  • More common in uncircumcised men

  • Condoms can reduce spread of HPV by 70%

Preventing hpv
Preventing HPV

  • Abstinence. Avoiding skin-to-skin contact with someone with an HPV infection.

  • Using a latex condom during sexual intercourse may provide some protection.

  • Lifelong mutual monogamy

  • Vaccines and Education

Hvp vaccination
HVP vaccination

  • The approved vaccine against human papilloma virus (HPV) may have substantial benefits beyond preventing infections that might lead to cervical cancer and genital warts. New research shows it also protects against abnormalities that can lead to vaginal, vulvar, and anal cancers.

Hvp vaccination1
HVP vaccination

  • The vaccine only worked in women and girls who were not already infected with HPV. Gardasil (2006) or Cervarix (2009) are routinely given to 11- and 12-year-old girls, and allowed for girls as young as 9.

Hvp vaccination2
HVP vaccination

  • Vaccinating girls before they become sexually active and have a chance to catch HPV gives them the best chance of being protected by the vaccine.

Pap testing
PAP Testing

  • The Pap test (sometimes called a Pap smear) is a way to examine cells collected from the cervix (the lower, narrow end of the uterus). The main purpose of the Pap test is to detect cancer or abnormal cells that may lead to cancer. It can also find noncancerous conditions, such as infection and inflammation.

How often should a woman have a pap test
How often should a woman have a Pap test?

  • Current general guidelines recommend that women have a Pap test at least once every year, beginning about three years after they have sexual intercourse, but no later than age 21.

  • It is safe to wait 3 years, because cervical cancer usually develops slowly.

How often should a woman have a pap test1
How often should a woman have a Pap test?

  • This is continued to the age of 30.

  • Age 30 to 65, every three years

When is pap test no longer required
When is Pap test no longer required?

  • Women ages 65 to 70 who have had at least three normal Pap tests and no abnormal Pap tests in the last 10 years may decide, after talking with their clinician, to stop having Pap tests.

When is pap test no longer required1
When is Pap test no longer required?

  • Women who have had a hysterectomy (surgery to remove the uterus and cervix) do not need to have a Pap test, unless the surgery was done as a treatment for precancer or cancer.

Treatment for cervical cancer
Treatment for cervical cancer

  • A number of treatments are used to fight cervical cancer. In some cases, a combination of therapies may be recommended

  • You will meet one-on-one with physicians and practitioners to discuss and choose the treatment options that will work best for you.

Treatment for cervical cancer1
Treatment for cervical cancer

  • Your options for conventional, cervical cancer treatment may include the following:

  • Chemotherapy

  • Radiation therapy (e.g., external beam radiation, High-Dose Rate (HDR) brachytherapy)

  • Surgery

  • Immunotherapy/biotherapy

Treatment for cervical cancer

  • Treatment also depends on the stage. If only the surface of the cervix is involved, doctors can often completely remove the cancer by removing part of the cervix using the loop electrosurgical excision procedure, a laser, or a cold knife.

Treatment for cervical cancer2
Treatment for cervical cancer

  • Or cryotherapy may be used to destroy the cancer by freezing it.

  • If the cancer has begun to spread within the pelvic area, hysterectomy plus removal of surrounding tissues, ligaments, and lymph nodes (radical hysterectomy) is necessary.

Treatment for cervical cancer3
Treatment for cervical cancer

  • When the cancer has spread extensively or recurs, chemotherapy is sometimes recommended. However, chemotherapy reduces the cancer's size and controls its spread in only 25 to 30% of women treated, and this effect is usually temporary.


Incorporate foods into your diet that help clear the HPV virus from your body. The HPV virus causes cancer by the inflammation caused by persistent infection.  Phytochemicals and vitamins that have been shown to hasten clearance in reputable studies and foods that contain them include:


Lutein - spinach, kale, turnips, mustard and collard greens

Vitamin C - oranges, grapefruit, peachesVitamin A - carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, spinachLycopene - tomato products (especially sauces), watermelon


  • Prognosis depends on the stage of the cancer

  • With treatment, 80 to 90% of women with stage I cancer and 50 to 65% of those with stage II cancer are alive 5 years after diagnosis.


  • Only 25 to 35% of women with stage III cancer and 15% or fewer of those with stage IV cancer are alive after 5 years.


1. The FUTURE II Study Group (2007) Quadrivalent Vaccine against HPV to Prevent High-Grade Cervical Lesions Published in the May 10, New England Journal of Medicine. 356, 9: 1915- 1927.

2. Quadrivalent Vaccine against Human Papillomavirus to Prevent Anogenital Diseases Published in the May 10, 2007 New England Journal of Medicine (Vol. 356, No. 19: 1928-1943). First author: Suzanne M. Garland, MD, Royal Women's Hospital and the University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.

3. Case–Control Study of Human Papillomavirus and Oropharyngeal Cancer Published in the May 10, 2007 New England Journal of Medicine (Vol. 356, No. 19: 1944-1956). First author: Gypsyamber D'Souza, PhD, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.


4. Koutsky LA, Ault KA, Wheeler CM, et al. A controlled trial of a human papillomavirus type 16 vaccine. New England Journal of Medicine 2002; 347(21):1645–1651.

5. Koutsky M. (2002). Do condoms prevent genital HPV infection, external genital warts, or cervical neoplasia? American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association. 29:725-35.

6. Koutsky LA, Ault KA, Wheeler CM, et al. A controlled trial of a human papillomavirus type 16 vaccine. New England Journal of Medicine 2002; 347:1645-51.

7. Harper DM, Franco EL, Wheeler C, et al. Efficacy of a bivalent L1 virus-like particle vaccine in prevention of infection with human papillomavirus types 16 and 18 in young women: a randomized controlled trial. Lancet 2004; 364:1757-65.


8. Villa, LL, Costa, RL, Petta, CA, et al. (2005). Prophylactic quadrivalent human papillomavirus (types 6, 11, 16, and 18) L1 virus-like particle vaccine in young women: a randomized double- blind placebo-controlled multicentre phase II efficacy trial. Lancet Oncology.6:271-8.

9. http://www.cdc.gov

10. Pagliusi, SR, Teresa Aguado, M. (2004). Efficacy and other milestones for human papillomavirus vaccine introduction. Vaccine 23:569-78.

11. Cervical Cancer Prevention: HPV Diet. Posted by Lynne Eldridge MD at 6/22/2007 4:00 AM Retrieved June 20, 2008, from http://blog.avoidcancernow.com/2007/06/21/cervical-cancer- prevention-hpv-diet.aspx


  • National Cancer Institute. (2008). Cervical Cancer Retrieved June 20, 2008, from http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/cervical

    13. American Cancer Society, Inc. (2008). Detailed guide: cervical cancer. Retrieved June 9. 2008, from http://www.cancer.org/docroot/CRI/content/CRI_2_4_1X_What_i s_cervical_cancer_8_.asp?rnav=cri