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Thread: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

  1. #51
    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I am 25 and just had my second smear, I had my first at 22 as I told the doctor I was having pain during intercourse. If you are at all worried, go to the doctors and ask for one.

  2. #52

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I am from Czech Republic where we get a smear every year - I started with them at about 16 (before I was actually sexually active! Some hard core prevention). I was raised by all these leaflets in doctor's office saying that if I miss one year, I am probably going to die and it's going to be my fault. Now I live in the UK and I actually had to lie about the date of my last one to get it ./ I am slightly worried that I will have to tell my GP I have some symptoms just to get another one in a year and not have to wait another three x)
    Can I actually ask for a smear earlier? Or will they just ignore me?

  3. #53
    Join Date
    Sep 2013

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I'm 29 and have had 5 smears and a colposcopy. I live in wales. strange how things vary from place to place

  4. #54

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I have my first pap at 23 years old... I've always been afraid of them, but I needed a similar test done to check for another infection. I was always afraid of the outcome and if it would hurt, so I decided against it at 21. But now my worries of the pain are over... I just hope to not worry about the result. Though I've had the hpv vaccines. Guess there's a little less to worry about there!

    Though when she checked my cervix it actually looked and seemed fine to her, didn't test it yet due to the bacteria. But now I'm sure I'll be quite okay.
    Aspergers, PCOS, Anxiety.

    I'm just a big mess

  5. #55
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    In Italy we have free pap smears from age 25 to 64 as a part of a national screening. Of course, you can decide to have one on your own privately.

  6. #56
    Join Date
    Feb 2014

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I had my first one at sixteen.
    This is in the US, and it was back in the late 80s, before even doctors knew much about hpv and its relation to cervical cancer.
    The one I had at sixteen came back abnormal. I had recently become sexually active.
    The doctor treated this very aggressively, first colposcopy, then biopsy, then cryosurgery (where they freeze your cervix with liquid nitrogen so that the abnormal cells slough off).
    He told me that I had contracted an incurable, cancer-causing sexually transmitted virus.

    Well, now we know that 80% or more of Americans contract this virus, most within a year or two of beginning to have sex.
    We also know that over 90% of the time, it clears up on its own without treatment, within a year to eighteen months.
    We know that so many teenage girls have it and will show abnormal cells on a smear test, that it is not advisable to do smear tests on teen girls. The very vast majority will clear the virus by their 20s, and have normal smears by then.
    The recommendation now is not to have smears before age 21, regardless of sexual activity.
    We also know that a teenage girl with mild, hpv-related dysplasia should never, ever be subjected to the aggressive treatment I was subjected to. It will go away on its own. It is not significant. It does not require any treatment at all. It is so common among teenage girls that it is not necessary to even screen for it. It can simply be assumed that if they are sexually active, they have the virus. They will clear it on their own, within a year or so. Aggressive treatments like cryosurgery are not only unnecessary, but can damage the cervix and affect future fertility.

    What was done to me was awful, but the doctor was old, and none of them knew much about hpv back then.
    That was not the beginning of my health anxiety; I had already had it for years by then, but it sure didn't help.
    The result was that I ended up with two children before age eighteen.
    Why not? I apparently had an incurable, cancer causing disease and would be dead or at least infertile very soon. Why wait?

    Of course, I had no such thing.
    I never had another abnormal smear, and when the hpv-dna test was developed, I began to get those too, and they are always negative. I no longer have hpv. I probably no longer had it by the time I was seventeen. My body cleared the virus, and would have done so without any treatment at all, and if I'd waited until 21 to get my first smear, I never would've known that I'd ever had it.

    It is very rare for hpv to persist in the body; most people with normal immune systems are able to clear it easily. It only causes cancer if it persists for many years. In the vast majority of cases, it goes away on its own. But in the rare cases that it does not, 21 is plenty early enough to catch it while still in its precancerous stages. 25 is probably early enough too, in the vast, vast majority of cases.

    Here in the US, we used to do smears on any female who had been sexually active, no matter her age. That was wrong, and led to unnecessary and traumatic experiences such as mine.
    Please do not even consider getting a smear before age 21.

    ---------- Post added at 21:49 ---------- Previous post was at 19:12 ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by pearl79 View Post
    how come young women are getting cervical cancer when we are told its a slowly growing cancer... its that info that what keeps us going, cuz my doctor told me it take 10-15 years to turn into cervical cancer!! aand know that makes me feel loads better but young girls are just dying... how come? im scared that a smear every three years isnt enough!!! x
    It generally does take that long, and goes through a number of precancerous stages (CIN 1, CIN2, CIN3) before it reaches the stage of invasive cervical cancer.
    Most women get cervical cancer in their late 30s to 40s, and have had persistent hpv infections for decades before that.
    There is a rare type of cervical cancer, I believe it is called adenocarcinoma, that just pops up out of nowhere, without a lot of initial warning. It is really quite rare, and is often undetectable by smear tests.
    This is probably the type these "young girls" are suffering from.
    There are also cases where young women are diagnosed with and treated for abnormal smears, and believe they have or had cancer. I've had friends tell me they had cervical cancer a few years ago, and then I later find out they never did, they merely had abnormal precancerous cells.
    There is a lot of confusion and misunderstanding around the issue, but it is actually very rare for women younger than 35 to have full blown invasive cervical cancer.

  7. #57
    Join Date
    Jul 2014

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    Here in the US we start having smears when we go to see an OBGYN. I am 35 now but have had annual smears since I was 18

  8. #58

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    Cancer is always a dangerous term for human . And most of the people are suffering from cancers nowadays by this abnormalities. When I think about this disease, I get fear and I know that it is so harmful.

  9. #59
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I am petrified of cervical cancer. Literally terrified. I have had some form of discharge for many years and I plucked up the courage to go to the doctors a few months ago. I was given an STI test (despite me explaining I have only had one sexual partner and been with them for over five years) and some swabs to do at home which came back normal. The doctor explained that generally discharge changes over time and with things like cervical cancer you also get pain during sex and bleeding which at the time calmed me down. She also gave me some antibiotics to take incase it was BV.

    Last month they did a pelvic exam when I was having some problems with my pill (irregular bleeding) and she mentioned there was some blood there when she had a look at my cervix which worried me. The next day I started my period for the first time in months at the bleeding stopped after that.

    Problem is now, through all of this I have still had the discharge. I know some discharge is normal but I can't shake the what if feeling. I am petrified that if I leave it till I'm 25, I'll go for my smear and they'll find something and it'll be too late. Am I within my rights to go back and get them to investigate this properly?! I'm losing sleep over this. Again.

  10. #60
    Join Date
    Jul 2015

    Re: Preventing Cervical Cancer & What you should know

    I'm 32 and I've never had a smear test. I'm not sexually active so do I still need to have one?

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