Regular pap tests are an integral part of women's health
The best medicine is preventative medicine. That's why regular visits to your ob-gyn include Pap tests, also known as Pap smears, a routine gynecological exam that screens for cervical cancer. The statistics don't lie: around 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer in the United States each year. It behooves any woman to maintain a regular schedule of testing to ensure she stays ahead of any potential irregularities.
Cervical cancer: what you need to know
Among the most common causes of cervical cancer is human papilloma virus or HPV, a sexually transmitted disease, certain strains of which lead to the development of cervical cancer. Lifestyle factors including smoking, certain types of birth control and plurality of sexual partners can increase your risk for cervical cancer as well. Women older than 21 should be regularly screened for HPV while it is recommended that women over the age of 30 also receive regular screenings for HPV.
Earlier detection means earlier treatment
Despite all this, the stats are also on your side: Pap testing has turned the tables on cervical cancer. In fact, early detection of cervical cancer and treatment for precancerous symptoms before they become cancerous has dramatically reduced the incidence of cervical cancer in our population. If you are interested in finding out how preventative medicine and regular screenings can help you avoid life-altering conditions such as cervical cancer, give our office a call to schedule an appointment today.