Protect Yourself From Cervical Cancer

I wished I would have had this information when I ran my Cancer Awareness week at the beginning of August.  I think it’s worth sharing though, even without a ‘themed’ week.

Cervical Cancer is the second most common type of cancer found in women worldwide.  Even some women whose Paps appear normal are suddenly diagnosed with invasive cervical cancer. 

The thing is, it can be prevented.

One answer many people know of already, that is the HPV vaccination.  However, that is for females 26 and under.  It helps protect against the two types of HPV that are most commonly associated with cancer of the cervix.  That’s a powerful tool for our daughters.

But what about us? (Us being women in their 30s and up.)  What can we do to protect ourselves against cervical cancer?  

I urge you all to make it a priority to have a Pap test done each year.  It’s so important to do this.  If cervical disease is caught early it can be treated before cancer develops.  That’s why it’s important to return for tests each year.

The other thing you can do is have the HPV test.  (Yeah, I had never heard of this either, which is why I’m sharing this)  The digene HPV test is conducted from the same sample as your Pap and it identifies women with high risk HPV infections that can cause cancer of the cervix.  High risk HPV infection is very common.  In fact, an estimated eight out of ten women get HPV at some point in their lives.

Although no test is perfect, the digene HPV test is less vulnerable to error than the Pap.

On average, studies show that the combination of the digene HPV test and the Pap identifies 95-100% of advanced cervical disease.  The digene HPV test and the Pap look for different ‘clues’, so getting both of them offers the most peace of mind for women over 30, since that group has the greatest risk of cervical cancer.

To learn more about HPV testing visit where you can find resources such as educational material, videos, FAQs, and insurance information.

“I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of the  QIAGEN digene HPV test. Mom Central also sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.”

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