CAN CERVICAL AND OVARIAN CANCER BE DETECTED?
The most common forms of cervical and ovarian cancers starts with pre-cancerous changes, and there are ways to stop this disease from developing. The first way is to find and treat pre-cancers before they become true cancers, and the second is to prevent the pre-cancers.
A well-proven way to prevent cervix and ovarian cancer is to have testing (screening) to find pre-cancers before they can turn into invasive cancer. The Pap test (or Pap smear) and the HPV (human papillomavirus) test are specific tests used during screenings for cervical cancer. If a pre-cancer is found, it can be treated, stopping cervical cancer before it really starts. Most invasive cervical cancers are found in women who have not had regular Pap tests.
The Pap test or smear is a procedure used to collect cells from the cervix so that they can be looked at under a microscope to find cancer and pre-cancer. It’s important to know that most invasive cervical cancers are found in women who have not had regular Pap tests. A Pap test can be done during a pelvic exam, but not all pelvic exams include a Pap test.
An HPV test can be done on the same sample of cells collected from the Pap test. The HPV test can help know if there is an HPV infection which is one condition that can lead to pre-cancers.