Physicians raise awareness for cervical cancer

Physicians and health organizations are spreading the word about cancer prevention this January as part of Cervical Health Awareness Month.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 12,000 women living in the United States will be diagnosed with cervical cancer each year, and more than 4,000 women die from the disease annually, even with screening and treatment.
NYU Langone Brooklyn Medical Arts Pavilion's Dr. Kari Hacker says the disease is preventable. She says that there are three vaccines currently licensed and FDA approved for cervical cancer prevention.
"Gardasil 9 protects against nine different subtypes of the HPV virus and there is almost 100% protection against those nine different subtypes of the virus,” Hacker says.
She says approval for the vaccine has recently been extended to both women and men from nine to 45 years old.
She says that because women frequently contract the virus from men and there isn’t an approved test for HPV in men, boys and men should be vaccinated as well.
Dr. Hacker also notes that it's important for women to get routine screenings.
"Other countries where they do a better job of vaccinating, like Australia, they have almost eliminated pre-cervical cancer lesions and cervical cancer in young girls,” she says.