Speaking of vaccines, did you know the HPV vaccine (Gardasil 9) is 99% effective in preventing HPV (human papilloma virus), the virus that most often causes cervical cancer?
HPV is an extremely common STD that consists of thousands of strains, some of which cause cervical cancer. Although cervical cancer is highly preventable, in the U.S., nearly 13,000 women are diagnosed each year and more than 4,000 die from it each year. Highly effective in preventing HPV infection, the HPV vaccine is routinely recommended for boys and girls ages 11 and 12.
Gynecological screenings (pap tests) can also help prevent cervical cancer by detecting precancerous cells in the cervix. As with most cancers, early detection is key! The CDC recommends women ages 21-65 get a pap test every two to three years. Most women who die from cervical cancer did not have regular pap tests.
This Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, AAHP encourages you to learn and share info about cervical cancer. If you are due for a pap test, make an appointment! If you or your child is eligible to take the HPV vaccine, do your research and make an appointment to get it! Learn more about Montgomery County’s cervical cancer screenings here.