Wednesday, May 08, 2013

She Matters

Last week I had the privilege of going to a short forum concerning the second highest cancer affecting Filipina women, Cervical Cancer. She Matters Cervical Cancer Foundation Inc. dedicates it's effort and sources to help spread awareness and educate Filipinos about the cancer. Which is taken for granted because of misconceptions surrounding the illness. But of all the important points brought up about the disease, one thing that was clearly emphasized was that it is preventable if women would go and have themselves checked. As the old adage goes, prevention is better than cure. And that the disease may be curable if discovered in it's early stage.

Here are some notes about Cervical Cancer (Source: She Matter's Facebook):
  1. Cervical cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the tissues of the cervix. 
  2. Certain types of HPV (human papilloma virus) CAUSE cervical cancer. It is sexually transmitted.
  3. Early stage of the cancer shows NO SYMPTOMS. Bleeding, pelvic pain & other symptoms show only at the later stage of the cancer. Your body will not tell you if you are infected with the virus, unless you have a regular Pap Smear.
  4. What are the risk factors? Anything that increases your risk of getting a disease is called a risk factor. Having a risk factor does not mean that you will get cancer;  not having risk factors does not mean that you will not get cancer.  
Possible risk factors are :
  • Not having a regular (annual) Pap Smear 
  • Having 1st sexual intercourse at a young age.
  • Giving birth to many children.
  • Having many sexual partners.
  • Smoking.
  • Using oral contraceptives for a long time.
  • Weak immune system.
5. What to do to prevent it?
  • Early detection is prevention :  go to your OB-gyne once a year for a Pap Smear. Some doctors would say "once you start having sex, you should have a Pap Smear every year". Others would say "3 years after you have started sex, Pap Smear is a must. " We suggest you talk to your doctor about it.
  • Avoid above risk factors.
  • Exercise every day.
  • Eat more fruits & veggies to strengthen your immune system.
  • Avoid stress.
For more information about the organization or if you wish to get in touch with them, do visit their Facebook page :

Would like to thank, Angeli Bas of for inviting me to join the forum :)

Incidentally, after the forum this photo came up on my FB newsfeed courtesy of one of my friends, she got it off the net :) Good tip to know, thankfully I like eggplant and Avocados is just one of my favourite things to eat!
2013 - Rafi

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