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Cervical Cancer and the HPV Vaccine

Cervical cancer is cancer of the cervix, but it may be prevented with the HPV vaccine.
Cervical Cancer

You may have seen HPV ads during commercial breaks of Hannah Montana and Gossip Girl. But what exactly is HPV? And how is it linked to cervical cancer? Find out about it right here.

What Is Cervical Cancer?

Cervical cancer is cancer of the cervix, which is the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina. Cervical cancer is the fifth most common cancer in women worldwide, and the eighth most common in the US. Even though statistics are high, you could have cervical cancer and not even know it because sometimes there are no symptoms. But possible signs include vaginal discharge and vaginal bleeding, even when you don't have your period.

What Causes Cervical Cancer?

Cervical cancer is often caused by a virus called human papillomavirus (HPV). There are over 100 types of HPV, but most of them are pretty harmless, like the viruses that cause warts on your hands and feet. But about 40 types of HPV are sexually transmitted and affect the genitals, which can cause genital warts and even cervical cancer. If you think you have genital warts, see your doctor right away. The doctor will perform a gynecological exam called a Pap smear, which takes a swab of cells from the cervix to check for any abnormalities. It's a good idea to get a Pap smear every year after you become sexually active or turn 21, whichever comes first.

Who Gets the HPV Vaccine?

On June 8, 2006, the FDA approved the world's first vaccine against cervical cancer. Gardasil, which protects against four types of HPV, is recommended for girls aged nine to 26 before they become sexually active. But the vaccine won't protect you against all the different types of HPV, so it's important to continue to get checked by your doctor often and get annual Pap tests.

Did U Know?

  • The HPV vaccine is pretty expensive. It costs $360 US for three shots over a six month period.
  • January is Cervical Health Awareness Month, a time to bring awareness to a disease that's more common than people think.
  • A.J., who was a contestant on the seventh season of America's Next Top Model, is a survivor of cervical cancer.
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Comments

Yeliak

Yeliak wrote:

No one mentions the bad side effects from this vaccine. My mom and I made the choice no...
commented: Tue Jul 16, 2013

21inkiepielover
I am!
commented: Mon Jul 15, 2013

Un-thinkableImaginary:3
And people seriously? Be mature about this. Its really important.
commented: Mon Jul 15, 2013

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mcdonaldburger
mcdonaldburger posted in Friends:
IM REALLY WASTED RIGHT NOWBUT LOOK LISTEN... MAH BOI DABEASTFROMDAEAST GONNA HAVE A REAL SPECIAL DAY TODAY, IT'S his birthday sorry im sick of caps but it's his birthday and i want him to have a splendid good time so if there are any ladies out there please give him a message and chat him up im sure he's really looking forward to it to be honest all he does is look at his inbox waiting for people to message him nobody ever does i feel bad for the lad but anyway it's his birthday and i think he's gettting kicked off kidzworld cause he passed the age limit, actually i think he passed it a few years ago but whatever message him while u can he's a real great fellow looking for a good time no strings attached unless u want to he's desperate for a gf anyway happy birthday my lad, cheers mate
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CarnivalDay
Hiya. My cousin is getting married next Wednesday! The only thing is I really don't want to go. This may sound disrespectful and/or rude, but I don't really get along with his fiancé. I can't talk to her properly (incredibly stiff and hard to talk to her) and I don't think she likes me that much. Also, I'm kinda (largely) unsocial in big groups, and the fiancé apparently has a giant family coming. -.- Also, my dog -which we brought home a few months ago- hasn't had proper vaccinations (we found out she was slightly neglected and had matts everywhere. It must've been so painful) and can't get her into a kennel place (Kennel cough) or dog sitting service on such short notice. My mum will probably be staying home with her and dad and sister is going. But mum can't really say "I have to look after the dog" because they'll find it disrespectful and my cousin and his fiancé doesn't really like my at home family. The last resort is to make a excuse (but my mum doesn't really want to lie) and I'd like to make the excuse of I'm ill and mum needs to take care if me. If I have to go, does anyone have tips for going to a wedding you don't want to go to. sorry for long post,
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Tamara97
Tamara97 posted in Family Issues:
"animefreakXD" wrote:YES ,they are very, very strict. I can easily get punished if I do something wrong. I have to have A's and B's, act like an angel, and make sure the whole house is clean in order to stay out of trouble.
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Awesomeme234
Awesomeme234 posted in Style:
I think you should be you wether or not your tomboy or girlie your being you. You have your own style and don't let nobody change that because THEY don't like it it only matters if YOU like it
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MissD
MissD posted in Style:
This is such an interesting question.. I'll tell you why I think so. I am BOTH the biggest tomboy ever and the girliest girl. I think being either or BOTH is more in YOUR mind than in anything else - it's an internal feeling. Femininity is so personal. I always, always, always have my nails done. BUT they are Gel so they never chip and when I am climbing up mountains or pulling on my wetsuit to things that I find typically damaging to your nails - they stay perfect. So I am doing these rather "tomboyish" activities but my nails are awesome :P I wear a lot of dresses but that doesn't deter me from any activity, the key is shorts underneath. I don't wear make up, not usually but I do love lip gloss. One think I guess I think is important though, feel it. Remind yourself how awesome and unique you are, no matter what you wear - hold your head high and remind yourself you are a QUEEN. Not a princess, lame. BUT a queen! Good Luck, and I love all the practical tips everyone provided. Great job you guys! 
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