Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer affecting women worldwide and being the 9th most common cancer in Singaporean women.
We can protect ourselves and love ones! But, how?
By going for HPV vaccination.
First, let’s take a look some common myths.
Myth 1: Cervical Cancer is not common, it can never happen to me.
- For the last 20 years, the number of cases in Singapore has been decreasing because women take part in prevention programs.
- 500,000 women are diagnosed each year globally, and is the 2nd most common cancer affecting women.
Myth 2: I am not at risk as there is no such history in the family.
- Almost all cases of cervical cancer occur in women with no family history of it. It is caused by a common virus – HPV.
Myth 3: Getting Cervical cancer is linked to being sexually promiscuous.
- HPV is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact: sexual intercourse or contact at the genital area OR non-sexual contact (mother to infant during delivery)
- Women can still be infected from having just one partner.
- Every sexually active woman is at risk of being affected by HPV as it’s very common and easily transmitted.
Myth 4: If I have a normal PAP smear, it means I will not have Cervical cancer.
- A Pap smear is a screening test to detect any changes in cervical cells; it is not enough to protect you from cervical cancer.
- In Singapore, sexually-active women aged between 25-69 are advised to have a pap smear done every 3 years.
Myth 5: Pap smear program is effective, HPV vaccination is unnecessary. (This is what I thought too!)
- Pap smear: detect changes of the cells in the cervix which may later develop into cancer.
- Vaccination: To help prevent certain HPV infection and reduce the risk of developing cervical per-cancers and cervical cancer.
Myth 6: My daughter is too young to be vaccinated. She won’t be at risk at the age of 10.
- Immune response is stronger when vaccinating young.
With Tiphanie & Verlyn at the talk.