Published on January 26, 2023
Did you know cervical cancer could one day be eliminated? Hi, I’m Dr. Esther Reynoso, an OB/GYN, spouse of Rep. Lou Correa of California, and a member of the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program. January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, so I’m sharing how you can prevent or detect this disease early.
Thanks to screening and vaccination, cervical cancer is highly preventable. In 2018, the World Health Organization announced a global call for action to eliminate cervical cancer within the next century, with key goals that we can reach by 2030. Though overall cervical cancer rates have declined over the years, Hispanic women have higher rates of cervical cancer than other racial and ethnic groups in the U.S. and are less likely to be up to date on their cervical cancer screenings. Cervical cancer screening through Pap and HPV tests can help detect cancer early—often before cancer even develops— when treatment is more likely to be successful.
The HPV vaccine protects against infection with human papillomavirus, which causes most cervical cancer cases. The vaccine is recommended for all children ages 9-12 and a catch-up vaccine available for teens and young adults up to age 26. Even if you have been vaccinated, you should still get screened starting at age 21 if you have a cervix.
Talk to your doctor about cervical cancer screening and the HPV vaccine. Share this video with your mother, sister, daughter or friend who might need a reminder to schedule their appointments. To learn more, visit www.prevent cancer.com/cervical.
Listen to more Voices for Cancer Prevention on the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s YouTube channel.