Give Yourself Some Peace of Mind: Cervical Cancer Can Be Prevented
The International Cervical Cancer Prevention Week takes place from 23−30 January. The Estonian Cancer Society, the Estonian Health Insurance Fund (henceforth EHIF) and the Estonian Cancer Screening Foundation are organising a Cervical Cancer Prevention Week in Estonia to raise women’s awareness about the importance of the prevention and early detection of cervical cancer.EHIF continues to send invitations to women to participate in cervical screening. Invitations have been sent to women with a valid health insurance who are born in 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977 or 1982. In Estonia, about 150−160 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer every year. Cervical cancer mainly affects younger women. Most of the cases are diagnosed in the 30−50 age group: the time in a woman’s life when she is building a career and taking care of her family. In Estonia, the frequency of cervical cancer has not diminished. The main risk factor for cervical cancer is considered to be the human papillomavirus (HPV) that is transmitted sexually. The precancerous stage can last for 10−25 years but there are also some aggressive forms of cancer. If discovered early, the precancerous stages can easily be diagnosed and treated. The screening is free for women with a valid health insurance, and all of the women who receive an invitation are more than welcome to participate.