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Fiji Time: 12:12 PM on Monday 22 September

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Screening important

Luke Rawalai
Wednesday, September 03, 2014

ACCORDING to figures from the World Health Organization, 85 per cent of the 3670 deaths from invasive cervical cancer recorded in 2007 never had screening and Pap smears.

This was revealed by Sister Elenoa Vakatalebola during an awareness program to the Catholic Women's League in Solevu, Bua, adding that in the same year 11,150 cases of invasive cancer were detected worldwide.

Ms Vakatalebola said carcinoma of the cervix was one of the most common causes of cancer deaths in women.

She said over the past 40 years, the mortality rate had decreased by 50 per cent because of the widespread screening with the Pap smears.

"It is recommended that all women aged 18 to 70 who have been sexually active have a test every two years, or one to two years after first sexual activity, whichever is later," she said

"Having regular cervical screening is an important and natural part of being a woman. Human Papillomavirus or HPV vaccines have now been tested and found to be the most effective means of prevention."

She said the HPV vaccines were given to young womenbefore they started to have sexual relations.