News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


West Coast women taking advantage of cervical screening

July 2, 2013

West Coast women taking advantage of life-saving cervical screening

More than 6000 women in the West Coast region have had cervical screening in the three years to December 2012.

Janet Hogan, Clinical Nurse Manager Cervical Screening for the West Coast DHB, says while this is very pleasing, there are still women in the area aged 20 to 70 who are not having regular cervical smear tests, and she encourages them to contact the National Cervical Screening Programme.

“Investing a small amount of time in having regular cervical smears can reduce the risk of developing cervical cancer by 90 percent,” Janet says.

Women who are not sure when their smear is due, or who want to become part of the National Cervical Screening Programme can ring the freephone number 0800 729 729, see www.cervicalscreening.govt.nz , call 03 769 7853 or go to: http://www.westcoastdhb.org.nz/services/cervical_screening/default.asp

“Regular cervical smear tests are recommended from the age of 20 to 70 for women who have ever been sexually active.”

The human papillomavirus (HPV), which is a very common infection, causes cell changes to the cervix that can lead to cervical cancer. Changes in the cervix as a result of HPV happen very slowly and may clear on their own. However, sometimes these changes can become cancer.

Janet says having regular smears, every three years, means it is likely abnormal cells will be found and treated long before they progress to cancer.

She says some women may now be offered an HPV test when they have their cervical smear. The test helps identify women who may need further follow up with a specialist.

“A negative test result indicates you are unlikely to be at risk of developing cervical cancer in the next three to five years. This can reduce the need for repeat smears for women whose smears have shown mild changes or who have previously had treatment.

“A positive test result means a high-risk type of HPV has been found. In this case, your smear taker will talk to you about follow up, so any cell changes can be treated early.”

The HPV test is usually taken at the same time as the cervical smear test, using the same sample of cells, so there is no need to have a second test.

Janet says it’s important for women who have had the HPV (cervical cancer) vaccine to remember to have regular cervical smears.

“The HPV Vaccine protects against several types of HPV that cause cervical cancer. However for women who have been immunised it is still important that they have smears every three years,” Janet says.

“I hope West Coast women book in for a smear if it’s due or overdue. It takes only a small amount of time, but it could save your life.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Max Rashbrooke: Review - The NZSO And Nature

This was a lovely, varied concert with an obvious theme based on the natural world. It kicked off with Mendelssohn's sparkling Hebrides Overture, which had a wonderfully taut spring right from the start, and great colour from the woodwinds, especially the clarinets. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Q&A: Prue Hyman On ‘Hopes Dashed?’

For Scoop Review of Books, Alison McCulloch interviewed Prue Hyman about her new book, part of the BWB Texts series, Hopes Dashed? The Economics of Gender Inequality More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Chuck Berry (And James Comey, And Bill English)

Back when many people were still treating rock’n’roll as a passing fad – was calypso going to be the new thing? – Chuck Berry knew that it had changed popular music forever. What is even more astonishing is that this 30-ish black r&b musician from a middle class family in St Louis could manage to recreate the world of white teenagers, at a time when the very notion of a “teenager” had just been invented. More>>

Howard Davis Review:
The Baroque Fusion Of L'arpeggiata

Named after a toccata by German composer Girolamo Kapsberger, L'Arpeggiata produces its unmistakable sonority mainly from the resonance of plucked strings, creating a tightly-woven acoustic texture that is both idiosyncratic and immediately identifiable. Director Christina Pluhar engenders this distinctive tonality associated with the ensemble she founded in 2000 by inviting musicians and vocalists from around the world to collaborate on specific projects illuminated by her musicological research. More>>

African Masks And Sculpture: Attic Discovery On Display At Expressions Whirinaki

Ranging from masks studded with nails and shards of glass to statues laden with magical metal, the works are from ethnic groups in nine countries ranging from Ivory Coast to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news