DOH-Volusia Urges Women To Schedule Cervical Cancer Screenings

By on January 8, 2018 in WNDB News

Daytona Beach, FL – Since January is Cervical Health Awareness Month, the Department of Health in Volusia County (DOH-Volusia) is asking women to make an appointment with a healthcare provider to get screened for cervical cancer.

In 2015, cervical cancer ranked as the 15th leading cause of cancer-related deaths among Floridian women. Cervical cancer begins in the cervix and is almost exclusively caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV), which is transmitted during sexual activity.

DOH-Volusia is encouraging cervical cancer screenings so women are better informed about preventing cervical cancer through lifestyle changes and vaccinations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that, with regular screenings and follow-ups, cervical cancer can be the most simple gynecological cancer to prevent.

To reduce your risk of cervical cancer, the CDC says you should:

  • Get the HPV vaccine between ages 9 and 26
  • Get regular Pap tests (or Pap smears) between ages 21 and 65
  • Not smoke
  • Limit how many sexual partners you have

DOH-Volusia recommends receiving a three-dose HPV vaccination. These vaccinations can prevent not only cervical cancer but cancers of the mouth and throat as well. The two screening tests for cervical cancer are:

  • The Pap test (or Pap smear) – identifies precancers or changes to cells of the cervix that may become cancerous if untreated.
  • The HPV – identifies the virus that may cause changes in the cells of the cervix.

To find out when the most appropriate time for a Pap test is, consult your healthcare provider. Tests that target specific HPV strains can lead to an earlier diagnosis. If you are between the ages of 50 to 64, uninsured, and are at or below 200% of the federal poverty level, you can get a Pap test through DOH-Volusia’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. DOH-Volusia also offers HPV vaccines.

For more information on all the immunizations offered by DOH-Volusia go here. Additional information on HPV can be found here.

Photo courtesy of designer491 and Shutterstock.com.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2018.

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