Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Gynecologic Cancer

In this article, we’ll discuss several ways to reduce your risk. We’ll cover smoking, pap tests, and the HPV vaccination. These are all great ways to protect yourself against this potentially deadly disease. But there are other measures that you can take as well. You should always discuss these options with your doctor. Ultimately, the best way to lower your risk is to be proactive.

Smoking

A recent study found that smokers had a lower risk of endometrial cancer than non-smokers. While the reasons for the link remain unclear, it does seem clear that cigarette smoking lowers your risk of this disease. One of the most important factors that may increase your risk of developing endometrial cancer is estrogen, a known cause of this disease.

The evidence for smoking’s protective effect on endometrial cancer and other non-respiratory- tract cancers is conflicting. Some studies suggest that the association between cigarette smoking and endometrial cancer is limited to postmenopausal women. Other studies suggest that the association is limited to women who smoke while on hormone replacement therapy.

The biological mechanisms behind the associations remain unclear. But, there has been speculation that cigarette smoking may have an anti-estrogenic effect on estrogens; however, this is not conclusive, and it is important to note that smoking is strongly associated with earlier menopause.

Pap tests

Pap tests

Although Pap tests can help reduce your gynecologic cancer risk, not all abnormal results are harmful. In fact, cancerous lesions in the cervix are not found by Pap tests, and other conditions may cause abnormal cells. However, the tests are useful in detecting precancerous cells in the cervical lining. Pap tests can also reveal cancer-promoting viruses, such as HPV.

You’ll need to undress and cover your vagina if you have a Pap smear. Pap smears can also detect HPV, but you should not use birth control or tampons for three days before the exam. Women who have a hysterectomy should wait five years before having the test again. After this, they should avoid using birth control cream or foam or rinsing their vagina.

Hysterectomy

If you have had a hysterectomy, you are less likely to develop Gynecologic cancer. But what are the risks? In addition to cancer risks, hysterectomy may cause complications such as bleeding, infection, and recurrent miscarriages. To understand the risks of surgery, you should know how the surgery works. A hysterectomy reduces the risk of Gynecologic cancer by more than half.

A hysterectomy will eliminate your risk of uterine cancer and greatly decrease your risk of developing other gynecologic cancers. The surgery removes your fallopian tubes, which may reduce your risk of developing ovarian cancer. Regular exams and screenings of these areas are also helpful in reducing your risk. The procedure will reduce the risk of ovarian and uterine cancer, but it won’t prevent them.

HPV vaccination

HPV vaccination

The first-generation HPV vaccine reportedly reduced the risk of cervical cancer by 87%, according to a study published in The Lancet. In mid-2019, there would be about 450 fewer cases of cervical cancer and about 17,200 fewer pre-cancers. The study compared seven groups of women and was conducted to determine whether vaccination reduces the risk of gynecologic cancer.

Infection by HPV causes genital warts and different types of cancer. Although cervical cancer takes between 15 and 20 years to develop in women with normal immune systems, most cervical cancer cases are caused by HPV. More than 100 countries recommend that girls get HPV vaccinations to reduce the risk of Gynecologic cancer. However, vaccination isn’t foolproof and isn’t a guarantee of protection.

Ovarian cancer screening

Ovarian cancer screening

Ovarian cancer screening can help lower your risk of the most common type of Gynecologic cancer. An annual pelvic examination is the most common test to detect this type of cancer. However, some research suggests that there are many other types of screening tests you can use. For example, a cancer risk assessment from Loyola University Chicago can help determine whether ovarian cancer screening is right for you.

While no specific screening tests are available for vulvar and vaginal cancer, women should schedule annual checkups and notify their doctor about any changes. One test used to detect cervical and vaginal cancer is the human papillomavirus (HPV) test. Fortunately, HPV vaccination is highly effective in preventing cervical and ovarian cancer.

228 thoughts on “Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Gynecologic Cancer”

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