Cervical cancer develops in a woman's cervix (the entrance to the womb from the vagina). It mainly affects sexually active women aged between 30 and 45. Almost all cases of cervical cancer are caused by HPV. HPV is a very common virus that can be passed on through any type of sexual contact with a man or a woman.
The NHS offers Cervical Screening, sometimes called a Smear Test, for all women aged 25 years and over, chances of recovery are significantly higher if cervical cancer is diagnosed at an early stage.
When diagnosed at an early stage it's usually possible to treat it using surgery. In some cases, it's possible to leave the womb in place, but it may need to be removed. The surgical procedure used to remove the womb is called a hysterectomy. Radiotherapy is another option for some women with early-stage cervical cancer. In some cases, it's used alongside surgery or chemotherapy, or both.
The NHS Cervical Screening Programme invites all women from the age of 25 to 64 to attend cervical screening. Women aged 25 to 49 are offered screening every 3 years and those aged 50 to 64 are offered screening every 5 years. Cervical screening is an easy and quick way for women with no symptoms to prevent cancer by finding and treating it early. The screening takes a matter of minutes and should be painless.
More information on Cervical Cancer and screening can be found at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cervical-screening/
For more information on Screening & Immunisations click here.