Cervical Cancer - Facts
Cervical cancer is the third most common cancer in women overall. 370.000 new cases are identified each year, 80% are in developing countries. Highest rates are found in Central America and in sub-Saharan Africa. It is the leading cause of death from cancer among females in underdeveloped countries. In developing countries some 200,000 women are killed each year by this disease.
According to the American Cancer Society about 11150 new cases of invasive cervical cancer are predicted in the US in 2007. About 3,670 deaths will be encountered caused by this disease. A main issue in fighting cervical cancer is effective screening for early stages of the disease. Cervical cancer often can be cured when detected and treated early.
What is Cervical Cancer?
Cervical Cancer begins in the lining of the cervix. At the beginning
some cells transform to cell types which are accounted to be
potentially or definitely malignant. One term often used is dysplasia
for an abnormal cell with malignant potential. Sometimes these changes
might go away without any treatment, but often as soon as cells show
features of malignancy they do not stop growing - a tumor forms which
finally spreads within the cervix, and over time can spread to other
parts of the uterus and adjacent organs, if not treated.
There are two main types of cervical cancer. About 80% to 90% are squamous cell carcinomas. The other 10%-20% are adenocarcinomas. A mixed carcinoma shows features of both types.
Risk FactorsThe most common cause for cervical cancer is infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV).
Other possible risk factors include:
- Giving birth to many children.
- Having many sexual partners.
- Having first sexual intercourse at a young age.
- Smoking cigarettes.
- Oral contraceptive use ("the Pill").
- Weakened immune system
Read more about risk factors here.
- www.nccc-online.org (About Cervical Cancer)
- www.cancer.org (Statistical Data)
- www.cancer.org (What is Cancer of the Cervix)
- www.nlm.nih.gov (Risk Factors)
This page was last updated:
April 29, 2006It is not the intention of Cervicalcancer.org to provide specific medical advice, but rather to provide users with information to better understand their health and their diagnosed disorders. Specific medical advice will not be provided, and Cervicalcancer.org urges you to consult with a qualified physician for diagnosis and for answers to your personal questions.