ABOUT 1,000 new cervical cancer cases are registered annually in the country, Paradise Private Hospital obstetrics and gynaecologist senior specialist Dr Mahlon Paiva says.
“Of the figure, about 600 will die from the disease,” he added.
Paiva said despite efforts to educate and encourage women to do regular check-ups for cancer, very few sought to have Pap smear tests.
“We have a scheduled six-week postnatal appointment for family planning and a Pap smear screening test. But only about 36 per cent return for the test.
“Regular check-ups consisting of visual inspection of the cervix, Pap smears or human papillomavirus (HPV) infection DNA testing are important in detecting cervix cancer,” he said, adding that a Pap smear test should be done every two years.
Paiva said the majority of women also simply did not go for tests because the tests were not widely available.
He said women should embrace preventive measures like avoiding smoking, multiple sexual partners and having fewer pregnancies.
“Making HPV vaccines available in health facilities can be an effective way to prevent cervical cancer.”
PNG Health News
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