QCS launches cervical cancer awareness campaign
The Qatar Cancer Society (QCS) has launched a month-long campaign titled 'Darbek Khadar' to raise awareness about cervical cancer. Through the campaign, women can do Pap Smear test free in Al Ahli hospital and Al Emadi hospital.
QCS will organise a closing ceremony on January 28 at Ritz-Carlton Doha for women who did Pap Smear test and there will be a raffle draw. Also present will be health educators to answer questions from the participants.
QCS is holding awareness lectures and workshops involving the country's diverse sectors to raise people's awareness of the symptoms of the disease, the factors responsible for it as well as methods of prevention and cure.
QCS health educator Dana Mansour noted that cervical cancer is the abnormal growth of the cervical cells, the lower part of uterus. Cervical cancer can affect any woman and especially between the age of 20 and 50 and one of most common cancers in women worldwide.
According to Mansour, the risk factors for the disease include human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, smoking, recurrent cervical infections, family history, having given birth to three or more children, using birth control pills for a long time and lack of screening.
Mansour explained that the early signs and symptoms of the disease are abnormal vaginal bleeding, abnormal vaginal discharge, pelvic pain, pain during intercourse, and it can be detected by Pap test or HPV test and prevented through HPV vaccine for those aged 15 years and above.
Cervical cancer often does not show symptoms until it is in an advanced stage. So it is important to start early detection tests regularly even when one is healthy.
She noted that the Pap test is a simple one and the best time to do the test is 10-14 days from the first day of menstruation. The first Pap test should be done after three years of marriage if the age is 21 years or above. After the first Pap test, women should go for the test every three years until the age of 65. After 65, the test can be stopped if the last three Pap tests are normal. Pap tests can be done in most of the health centres run by Primary Health Care Corporation.
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