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Cervical Cancer and HPV by CANSA


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The United States Congress designated January as Cervical Health Awareness Month.

CANSA places the focus on Cervical Cancer during the month of September. Cervical Cancer is the 2nd most common cancer among South African women.


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Cervical Cancer and HPV by CANSA

  1. 1. Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer among South African women
  2. 2. *SA Statistics as per National Cancer Registry (NCR) 2007
  3. 3. What is cervical cancer? • Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that occurs in the cells of the cervix (the lower part of the uterus/womb) • It is one of the most common cancers among South African women, and a leading cause of death among women in developing countries Cervical cancer does not develop suddenly. There is a gradual change from normal cervical cells, through various levels of abnormality, to pre- cancerous lesions and eventually to cancer. This whole process can take many years.
  4. 4. What is a Pap smear? • A Pap smear is a procedure that is done to detect early cell changes in the cervix to help prevent cancer • By having Pap smears regularly, treatment can be given at an early stage and so prevent the development of advanced cervical cancer Although some women may experience discomfort, a Pap smear is usually quick and painless
  5. 5. If abnormal cells are detected, you will be referred for treatment to prevent development of cervical cancer How is a Pap smear done? • To allow for a visual inspection of the vagina and cervix and to enable the easy collection of cervical cells, a health practitioner inserts an instrument called a speculum into the vaginal canal • Cervical cells are then collected with a small wooden spatula or a small cervical brush • The cells are put onto a glass slide which is then sent to a laboratory for examination under a microscope
  6. 6. You or your partner had many sexual partners ... (or still have) • Many sexual partners increases your risk of HPV infections • Being sexually active from a very young age increases exposure • Women in same sex relationships should also be screened regularly as HPV is transmitted by means of body fluids You have an increased risk for cervical cancer if...
  7. 7. You haven't had a Pap smear in the past three or more years • Women who have never had a Pap smear, or who have not had one for several years have an increased risk • Don’t forget... Pap smears are the single most effective cervical cancer screening procedure to detect cervical cancer You're between 18 and 40 years old (of child-bearing age) • Most high risk pre-cancerous lesions are found in women of childbearing age • Multiple pregnancies, especially after 5 to 7 full-term pregnancies, increase the risk of cervical cancer You have an increased risk for cervical cancer if...
  8. 8. You have a weakened immune system • Women with weakened immune systems - when diagnosed with Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) or when taking immune-suppressing drugs for auto-immune diseases or after organ transplants - are more likely to develop cervical cancer You're a smoker • Recent research showed that smoking increases cervical cancer risk by 50% You've had persistent Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) infections • HPV infection of the cervix is the primary risk factor for cervical cancer and is associated with 70% of all cases You have an increased risk for cervical cancer if...
  9. 9. What is HPV? • Human Papillomaviruses (HPVs) is a group of more than 100 related viruses • About 40 types are sexually transmitted through genital contact while 2 types (16 + 18) are considered high risk in South Africa • HPVs are transmitted via skin-to-skin contact and body fluids • Some HPVs, such as those that cause common warts that grow on hands and feet, do not spread easily
  10. 10. What is HPV? • HPV vaccines prevent infection with certain HPV types, such as those associated with the development of cervical cancer, genital warts, and some less common cancers • Speak to your medical practitioner for more information about available vaccines High risk HPV is estimated to cause... • 70% of cervical and anal cancers • 50% of vaginal, vulvar and penile cancers • 20% of head and neck cancers
  11. 11. HPV Vaccination • The Department of Health (DoH) is offering free HPV vaccinations to South African girls • In 2014 all grade 4 girls were provided with the opportunity to receive the HPV vaccination at schools • An implementation guide was also provided to educators with the necessary information regarding the vaccination of grade 4 girls in schools • The target group for the HPV vaccination is grade 4 girls who are 9 years and older
  12. 12. Just remember... If you have a number of risk factors, find out from your health practitioner or CANSA Care Centre or Clinic what you can do to reduce your risk The more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing cervical cancer It is possible to develop cervical cancer without any of the risk factors being present
  13. 13. Cervical screening is available at CANSA’s Mobile Health Clinics, Care Centres and Clinics country-wide
  14. 14. What is CANSA doing to help? • CANSA has Mobile Health Clinics that travel to remote areas throughout South Africa to reach people who would otherwise not have access to screening • These include breast examinations, Pap smear screening tests for cervical cancer, as well as other health tests such as cholesterol
  15. 15. One of CANSA’s Mobile Health Clinics creating awareness and doing free screening in the community
  16. 16. CANSA creating awareness and educating the public
  17. 17. In the past year, CANSA… Conducted 13 456 Pap smears for detection of cervical cancer and facilitated an additional 3 494 Pap smears in partnership with the Department of Health
  18. 18. In the past year, CANSA… • Supported almost 6 203 cancer patients through our 110 support groups and our 2 611 trained care and support volunteers • Visited and supported a monthly average of 1 055 patients at CANSA Care Centres and oncology units • Facilitated Home Based Care for 13 397 patients • Made medical loan equipment available to 4 320 people
  19. 19. Join the fight against cervical cancer... • Get screened regularly • Make a donation • Become a member • Sign up as a volunteer
  20. 20. Watch our videos Arch Bishop Tutu has a message for you: overview&list=UUsAPiRjevTiGiAvUV1WU77g CANSA Care and Support: overview&list=UUsAPiRjevTiGiAvUV1WU77g CANSA Screening: overview&list=UUsAPiRjevTiGiAvUV1WU77g
  21. 21. Help CANSA expand its cancer screening programmes, please consider making a donation at any of our CANSA Care Centres and Clinics country-wide
  22. 22. Contact us… • Call us toll-free on 0800 22 66 22, or email • Please log on to our CANSA national Facebook page: CANSA The Cancer Association of South Africa • If you are a survivor, please visit our Facebook page in support of cancer survivors: Champions of Hope - CANSA Survivors • Also take a look at our CANSA Twitter page: @CANSA • Join us on Pinterest: • View our videos on YouTube:
  23. 23. Disclaimer: Whilst the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) has taken every precaution in compiling this presentation, neither it, nor any contributor(s) to this presentation can be held responsible for any action (or the lack thereof) taken by any person or organisation wherever they shall be based, as a result, direct or otherwise, of information contained in, or accessed through, this presentation.