Cervical Cancer Prevention

Cervical cancer poses a significant health concern for many women, with statistics suggesting that it remains a prevalent issue. Dr. Kelly O. MD, a board-certified OB/GYN at Viva Life Health Hub in San Diego, specializes in cervical health. Offering expert consultations, Dr. Kelly provides comprehensive assessments and personalized treatment recommendations for individuals concerned about cervical cancer, aiming to empower women in managing their reproductive health effectively.

What is cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer affects the cervical cells. It develops due to a genetic mutation that occurs in the cells, and these abnormal cells grow at increased rates and don’t die off, as cells typically do. Your risk of cervical cancer increases if you’ve had multiple sexual partners, a history of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), or you smoke. Certain strains of human papillomavirus (HPV) increase your risk of cervical cancer. HPV is a very common STD.

What are the screening tests for cervical cancer?

The screening tests for cervical cancer include Pap smears and HPV testing. Both of these tests are conducted during your gynecological pelvic exam and require the collection of cells from your cervix.

You should begin Pap smears at age 21 and then have one at least every three years up until age 65. The Pap smear specifically tests for abnormalities in your cervical cells that indicate cancer or cancer risk.

The HPV test only looks for the strains of HPV associated with cervical cancer. If your HPV test comes back negative, you may be able to delay your next Pap smear for five years.

The team at Viva Life Health Hub specializes in cervical cancer education and can talk to you about the screening tests, why you need them, and when you should get them.

What can I do to prevent cervical cancer?

The team at Viva Life Health Hub takes a proactive approach to health and wellness and advocates for the prevention of cervical cancer. They can talk to you about the steps you can take to protect yourself.

To begin, you should get your HPV vaccination if you haven’t already received it. The team also talks to you about safe sex practices and how you can protect yourself from STDs. Continued Pap smears are also a preventive tool against cervical cancer.

What are the treatments for cervical cancer?

If the results of your Pap smear indicate abnormal cells, Dr. Elmore and her team can review your options during a virtual appointment. A positive Pap smear doesn’t necessarily mean you have cervical cancer, and you may need additional tests and procedures to further evaluate your cervical tissue.

Thanks to screenings and preventive measures, rates of cervical cancer in the United States are on the decline. For a consultation to learn more about cervical cancer and how you can protect yourself.