The cervix is the organ that connects the uterus and vagina in a woman’s body. Cervical cancer is a cancer that forms in the tissues of the cervix. Cervical cancer may not have symptoms that can be detected easily and is a slow growing form of cancer. It can be detected with regular Pap tests. A Pap test is a procedure in which scraped cells from the cervix are examined under a microscope.
It is estimated that there are now 11,150 cases of cervical cancer each year in the United States. It is also estimated that approximately 3,670 women die in the United States each year from cervical cancer.
Risk factors may be any number of things that will affect the chances of a person developing a disease greater. Protective factors are elements that affect the chances of a person developing a disease less. A person may be able to avoid some risk factors while others cannot be avoided. You can choose to stop smoking. Smoking is a known risk factor for many forms of caner. However, you cannot control inheriting specific genes from your parents that could be deemed a risk factor for a form of cancer. Genetics is an uncontrollable risk factor. Avoiding known risk factors and increasing known protective factors for cancer development is cancer prevention.
Avoiding risk factors does not offer assurance that a person will not develop cancer. Research has found some people may be more sensitive to cancer causing factors while others are not at all sensitive to the same risk factors.
By studying patterns of cancer in the population it can be learned what factors may contribute to cancer development and what may aid in the prevention of cancer. Meanwhile it cannot be explained why some people develop cancer while others do not.
It is best to discuss with your health care provider about cancer prevention methods. They will be best qualified to advise you about cancer prevention methods that would be suited for you.