By Opeyemi Oyerinde, Certified Nurse
Many are familiar with the saying prevention is better than cure but to my surprise many don’t follow this through.
Cervical cancer remains a deadly disease affecting women in Nigeria. It’s the second most common cancer affecting women in Nigeria. The good news is that it is preventable. Its alarming that despite its preventive measures there is continuous increase in its occurrence and increased death rate as a result of the disease.
The development of cancer takes place over a long period of time giving us room to prevent its occurrence, promotion or progression. Hence the need to be aware about the preventive measures to be taken.
Below are the preventive measures against cervical cancer. Vaccination,Screening, Diet and Lifestyle.
1. Vaccination: About 80% of cervical cancer is caused by a virus we call human papilloma virus HPV. Vaccine against this virus(HPV VACCINE) is present in Nigeria and it is encouraged to be taken prior to sexual exposure. Expert on the field encourage early commencement of this vaccine as early as 9yrs of age.
2. Screening: There are various screening programmes available in Nigeria for early detection of cervical cancer which enhance prompt intervention. The commonest being pap smear, others include Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid or Lugol Solution, DNA Testing and Self Sampling.
3. Diet and Lifestyle: There is always a link of what we eat and our health,hence diet plays a keen role in preventing cervical cancer. A constant intake of specific anticancer substances provided by some diet prevent development of cancer. Research has it that fruits and vegetables have anti cancer agent, also avoiding food with preservatives serves as a preventive measure.
Let’s together fight against this deadly disease affecting our women by raising awareness. Tell a friend to tell a friend. Cervical cancer is PREVENTABLE!!!!!