Ladies Listen: The healthcare screening that may save your life

With the access to free clinics and doctors our health is truly in our own hands. Increasing our awareness by having cancer screenings can help us live healthier for longer and inform us on how our bodies are doing. Both men and women are at higher risks for different types of cancer as time goes on. Doctors provide an array of services that may help you or someone that you love protect themselves and take care of their bodies. This is an issue that people from all walks of life tend to take for granted and everyone needs to make a concerted effort to improve their awareness of their own health.

When you go to your doctor for your annual checkups, find out what screenings are appropriate for your age.  Asking the right questions can make the difference between simple preventative treatments and invasive surgeries.  Be smart and make the right decisions right now.  Here are a few screenings that might make a difference for you:

“Colon Cancer Screening

There is also the matter of colon cancer in women. The screening test for early detection of this potentially fatal disease consists of testing a woman’s stool sample for blood on a yearly basis. At age 50 a baseline flexible sigmoidoscopy should be obtained. This is an exam that may be done in the doctor’s office that consists of using a scope to look in the rectum and colon from below, in order to find abnormalities, polyps or other potentially cancerous growths. If this test is normal it should be repeated every three years….

Screening for Cervical Cancer Is Important

Major strides have been made in the area of cervical cancer screening, diagnoses and treatment. In short, no woman need ever die of cervical cancer. A simple yearly Pap smear can detect abnormalities in the cells of the cervix that can be easily treated long before they progress to cancer. The average amount of time it takes for abnormal cervical cells to progress to invasive cancer is approximately 5 years. By neglecting to have a Pap smear performed for five consecutive years my friend had clearly put herself at risk for developing advanced cervical cancer and eventually losing her uterus and cervix , or even her life. As gynecologists, we recommend that all women who are sexually active or who have reached 18 years of age should have a yearly Pap smear. If a woman has no history of abnormal Pap smears, and has had normal Pap smears for three consecutive years, she can discuss having less frequent testing with her gynecologist.”

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