January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, where the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Cancer Society and other cancer and health organizations raise awareness of the importance of cervical cancer prevention measures and regular screening for cancer risk.
One of the most successful measures in preventing cervical cancer from developing, and early detection of the disease is the Pap smear, a test that every woman is encouraged to have. Around 70% of cervical cancers occur in women who have not had a Pap test or who failed to have follow-up procedures after a Pap test. But what is the Pap smear? And how does it help to prevent deaths from cervical cancer?
What is a Pap test?
A Pap test, or Pap smear, is a simple procedure that allows doctors to look at cells taken from your cervix. Doctors will be able to tell, by looking through a microscope, if there are any abnormal changes to the cervix. It will show any infections, abnormal (unhealthy or pre-cancerous) cells, and early stage cervical cancer.
How can a Pap test save your life?
A Pap test enables medical professionals to detect cancer in its earliest stages. According to the American Cancer Society, cervical cancer, if detected early enough, is almost 100% curable. The test will also identify infections or abnormalities in cervical cells that can lead to cancer. On detection these abnormalities and infections can usually be treated, eliminating the cancer risk and preventing most cases of cervical cancer.
What if your Pap results are “abnormal”?
If you are informed that the results of your Pap smear are abnormal, don’t panic. Although it can be very scary, it is important to be aware that most of the time, abnormal cervical cells resolve themselves or are easily treated. Almost all cases of cervical cancer can be prevented by detecting and treating abnormal cervical cells.
At Alternative Cancer Treatment Mexico we successfully treat a range of cancers and help to prevent relapse by boosting cellular health and providing immune support to patients. If you would like to know more about how we help patients with cancer, contact us today.
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