Black women, women with low education, and women from the North are the most affected by cervical cancer. information in info. oncollectAn unprecedented publication of the Cancer Foundation, released Friday (25). The leaflet brings data and seeks to draw attention to the occurrence of a disease that, according to specialists, can be avoided and even eradicated from Brazil with vaccines and preventive checks.
According to the bulletin, cervical cancer, in its most severe form, affects 49 women out of every 100,000 women in Brazil. Looking at just the northern region, the incidence is even higher, 79 per 100,000 women, which is the highest in the country. The Southeast region has the lowest rate: 36 per 100,000 women.
Of the cases analyzed, more than 60% were black women and about half were women with low education. Cancer is considered the most severe, 62% of cases are recorded in women with low education. The bulletin uses data and population records from more than 300 hospitals across the country from 2005 to 2019.
Across the country, eight women out of every 100,000 die of this cancer, according to data from 2015 to 2020. In the northern region, the number is higher, 15 out of every 100,000 women, while in the southeastern region it drops to nearly 6. A woman every 100 thousand.
According to the researchers, since it is a preventable disease if there is regular and adequate monitoring, such data reveal the vulnerability of this population and the bottlenecks in health services.
“The data brought information that shows how inequitable cancer care is in Brazil,” says epidemiologist and medical advisor at the Cancer Foundation, Alfredo Skaff. “Cancer is a disease that depends on time. The sooner we get a diagnosis, the better. The earlier we make the diagnosis, the faster the treatment, the less pain and the longer the survival of patients,” Skaff adds.
Prevention and symptoms
The main cause of cervical cancer, according to the Ministry of Health, is infection with some types of viruses called human papillomavirus (HPV). It is a type of cancer that takes several years to develop. However, the changes in the cells that lead to this cancer can be easily detected on a preventive scan. As the disease progresses, the main symptoms are vaginal bleeding, discharge, and pain.
To avoid disease, the main recommendation for all women who have had sexual intercourse, especially those between the ages of 25 and 59, is to perform a preventive test, the so-called Papanicolaou, which is to collect secretions from the cervix, using a spoon and a brush. The material is placed on a glass slide for later examination under a microscope.
Lesions that precede cervical cancer do not have symptoms, but can be detected by Papanicolaou. When cancer is diagnosed at an early stage, the chances of recovery are 100%.
In addition to examinations, vaccination is a way to combat disease. The HPV vaccine is offered free of charge by the Unified Health System (SUS) in health centers. It targets boys and girls between the ages of 9 and 14. Immunosuppressed men and women, ages 9 to 45, people living with HIV/AIDS, solid organ or bone marrow transplant recipients and cancer patients can also be vaccinated.
According to the Department of Health, HPV vaccination in adolescents has been adopted in more than 100 countries. In many of these countries, there are studies on the effect of this strategy with positive results in preventing and reducing diseases caused by the virus, such as cancer of the cervix, vulva, vagina, anal region, penis and oropharynx.
According to the Executive Director of the Cancer Foundation, Louise Augusto Maltoni, it is essential to have reliable information and strategies to combat cervical cancer, a form of cancer that can be prevented and even eradicated in the country.
We still consider it a neglected cancer. We know the cause, and there is a way to avoid it, there is a vaccine in the health centers, however, we have a high rate in some areas, “says Maltoni. “We need to respond to this,” he emphasizes.
“Cancer is a curable disease. Cervical cancer in the initial stage is curable. It is a treatment that is much easier to perform, more accessible, and less painful for the patient and her family. What do we want from this? Is the elimination of cervical cancer. And it can be done With one generation, ”Scaff continues.
The text was changed at 4:41 PM to add information
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