Green January: Cervical Cancer Combat Month - Know yourself, love yourself and take care of yourself
There are several types of cancer that can arise in different parts of the body, however, some of them are more common in women, who should pay attention to the signs, symptoms and prevention.
As a way of making the population aware of this subject, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), created a color for each type of tumor, in this way, every month there is an awareness campaign for some type of cancer, and thus the Janeiro Verde, which aims to raise awareness about the prevention of cervical cancer.
According to the National Cancer Institute (INCA), cervical cancer is among the three most frequent malignant cancers among women - behind only breast and colorectal cancer, in addition to being the fourth cause of death of women from cancer in Brazil. . A survey carried out by the institute pointed out that each year of the 2020/2022 triennium, 16,590 new cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed in Brazil, with an estimated risk of 15.43 cases per 100,000 women.
It is estimated that in Brazil, more than 16,000 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer and there will be more than 5,000 deaths, a number that could be avoided by periodically undergoing a gynecological exam (papanicolaou), because after an early diagnosis , the chances of cure are very high and the treatment is simple and easy.
In an interview with Jornal da Câmara de São Paulo, the oncologist and director of the Instituto Paulista de Cancerologia, Hezio Jadir Fernandes Júnior, spoke about the importance of prevention and early diagnosis, as a study found that 80% of patients with cervical cancer uterus were diagnosed at an advanced stage.
“Women only develop symptoms when they are already in an advanced phase, and what we want is to find these tumors in the earliest possible stages, where the symptoms practically do not exist, so the chances are close to 100%.” signs Dr. Hezio.
Knowing the importance of prevention, how to do this in the best way?
The first step in preventing cervical cancer is related to reducing the risk of contagion with the virus that infects the skin or mucous membranes, HPV, and to protect yourself from the human papillomavirus (HPV), it is recommended to:
I. Take the HPV vaccine provided by the PNI (National Immunization Program)
II. Use a condom for all intimate contact, even if the person has no visible wrinkles
III. Do not share unwashed underwear and bath towels
IV. Opt for cesarean if the wounds can be seen with the naked eye at the end of the pregnancy
Another fundamental step is to carry out the cytopathological exam of the uterine cervix, also known as papanicolaou, a preventive exam that tracks and detects changes in the cells of the cervix.
According to INCA, there are some risk factors that affect the chance of contracting a disease. For cervical cancer, some factors are:
II. HPV infection
IV. 3 or more pregnancies
V. Chlamydial infection
WE. Birth control pills
VII. Age, economic situation and diets
VIII. Becoming sexually active too early and having many sexual partners
It is necessary to be aware of the signs, as most women with cervical cancer in the early stages do not have symptoms. In more advanced stages, some of the symptoms are:
II. urine with blood
III. Difficulty urinating
IV. Continuous pain in the pelvic region
V. Tingling and swelling in the legs
WE. Bladder and lower bowel obstruction
VII. Difficulty defecating and bleeding
VIII. Vaginal discharge with color and odor
IX. Pain: during intercourse, lower abdomen, pain at rest and back
How often should the Pap smear be done, and who should do it?
The first two exams must be performed once a year, and if the result of both is negative, the next one can be done three years after the last result. In cases of an abnormal result, it is recommended to take the exam every six months or even be referred for a more elaborate exam, such as colposcopy.
In general, doctors recommend that the test be done by women between 25 and 64 years of age who are sexually active.
GynoPrep and its innovative method
Before, the collections were done in a conventional way, in the so-called smear method, where the samples were collected and placed directly on the slides, however, in this method, the number of unsatisfactory samples and collected were greater. With the Cytology method in a liquid medium - GynoPrep, the number of unsatisfactory samples is significantly reduced, as the GynoPrep liquid is a complete preservative solution, capable of preserving the cells and guaranteeing that 100% of the collected sample is sent to the laboratory for analysis. and processing.
Below, a demonstrative photo of a collection made using the smear method, where the samples were collected and placed directly on the slides:
Now, with the method of cytology in liquid medium - GynoPrep, there is a higher quality in the collection of samples and more assertive reports. Below is a demonstrative photo of a sample collection using liquid cytology - GynoPrep:
How does the GynoPrep collection process work?
I. Labeling, where there is the sample identification and conventional slides
II. In step 2, samples and slides 1A and 1B are positioned in the respective holes A and B on the Vortex, where homogenization takes place for 20 seconds
III. Insert the dual filters into the GP-1000 and pour the samples through the filters, delivering 1 to 3 ml. Process up to 100 slides per hour and two slides in less than 1 minute!
IV. The filters are responsible for retaining all mucus, blood and other components that are not of interest to the exam and through the membrane, print the samples on the slides without failures, soon after, the slides are ready for analysis
V. Finally, the slides are dried at room temperature without alcohol
Introducing our news - GynoPrep
In recent months, the GynoPrep method has undergone some changes, they were:
I. New flask - The new flask has an embossed logo on the cap, and internal reliefs that help the cells to detach from the brush
II. Personalized flasks - Now our customers can customize flasks with their logos and colors
III. Vials for non-gynecological collections - Now the vials come with labels in different colors, which indicate (non-gynecological)
women who won
Receiving a cancer diagnosis is not easy, however, hearing and reading reports of women who have been cured of the disease helps patients to maintain hope throughout the treatment process, until the cure. We, at Grupo Stra, made a point of separating a testimonial from a former cancer patient, in order to reinforce that no one is alone on this journey.
Verônica C. de Assis Barcelos - Cervical Cancer
“I started having problems, one night when I went to have intercourse and I had a very heavy bleeding, I was desperate.”
According to Veronica, from the middle of the treatment onwards it was a difficult part, as the body started to get tired due to the Radiotherapy and Chemotherapy, but it was important to see the support and care of the family in small details of everyday life, such as , in household chores. On the last day of Veronica's session, the doctor informed her that there was no more injury and that everything was fine.
“So, yes, it is painful, but I won.” Says Veronica in an interview.
After a diagnosis of cervical cancer, the doctor in charge will refer the patient to an indicated treatment, taking into account the stage of the cancer and the age of the patient. So, the treatment options are:
Surgery: It is usually done in the early stages of cancer. Thus, it consists of removing the uterus and its cervix from the upper part of the vagina. Despite being effective in most In most cases, this procedure prevents the patient from having a later pregnancy. Thus, the patient should talk to the doctor about her decision.
Radiotherapy: In this type of treatment, the patient receives precise rays at the site of the tumor. It may have side effects such as tiredness, local itchiness and skin reactions.
Chemotherapy: It is an effective treatment and used in the most advanced stages of cancer. In this case, the patient receives medication administered intravenously or infused into a vein. Side effects include fatigue, hair loss, bruising, bleeding, and anemia.
Target Therapy: It is the use of medicines developed especially for this type of cancer. Thus, this treatment has fewer side effects than conventional chemotherapy.
Immunotherapy: This treatment consists of using drugs that stimulate a person's immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells. Thus, among the side effects are: nausea, headache, rash, loss of appetite, constipation, joint and muscle pain, and diarrhea.
It is important to understand that even in the face of the disadvantages of each treatment, such as side effects, or in other types of cancer where breast and hair loss occurs, each method can save lives. So, be safe and take care.