Despite the wide-spread availability of cervical cancer prevention and screening programs in developed countries, the morbidity and mortality rates of cervical cancer in Zimbabwe remains high, a Cancer expert, Dr Ndabaningi Simango has said.
In an interview with 263Chat on Wednesday, Dr Simango confirmed cervical cancer to be leading cause of death in women due to the late surfacing of signs and symptoms.
“Cervical cancer has the highest incidents in gynecological cancers, so it is number one,
“Women tend to present very late leading to it causing death,” he said.
Parirenyatwa Group of hospitals in partnership with Hunan Provincial Maternal and Child Health Hospital from China will be inviting up to 1000 women aged between 25-65 for free cervical cancer screening and treatment.
“We are inviting women in that age group who have no symptoms and have been sexually active because they are at risk of developing cervical cancer,
“In this particular instance we are not looking for people with cervical cancer but anyone who is at risk hence that age group which is specified for cervical cancer screening to prevent,
“So basically what we are looking for is a symptomatic early cervical cancer, but we usually find are pre cancers for cervical cancer,” explained Simango.
He added that though sexual activity does take place before the age of 25, pre cancer usually develops around the age group they specified for screening.
“The whole point of screening is to get it before the cancer, there is a stage before the cancer develops,
“That is the stage we want to target, that’s why we get people in those age groups to stay healthy,
“Those that will be found will be treated of the cancer and sent to the clinics that look after patients for that,” said Simango.
Registration for cervical cancer screening and treatment will take place from the 10th to 27th of January 2018 at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals Family Planning Clinic.
Cervical cancer is the fourth most commonly diagnosed cancer among females worldwide. In 2012, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) recorded 527,624 new cervical cancer cases and 265,672 related deaths.
An estimated 90% of the globally recorded cervical cancer-related deaths are in low-and-middle-income countries (LMICs), for which 8 in 10 are recorded within the Sub-Saharan African region.