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Cervical Cancer - Article
ABSTRACT: Cervical cancer is the second most common type of cancer in women worldwide, after breast cancer. A preponderance of evidence supports a causal link between human papillomavirus infection and cervical neoplasia. The presence of high-risk human papillomavirus genital subtypes increases the risk of malignant transformation. Widespread use of the Papanicolaou smear has dramatically reduced the incidence of cervical cancer in developed countries. Accurate and early recognition of abnormal cytologic changes prevents progression of the disease from preinvasive to invasive. Research is under way to determine if efforts to reduce the false-negative rate of the Papanicolaou smear should include rescreening programs and fluid-based technology. Once cervical cancer is diagnosed, clinical staging takes place. Early-stage tumors can be managed with cone biopsy or simple hysterectomy. Higher stage tumors can be treated surgically or with radiotherapy. Advanced metastatic disease may respond to radiation therapy and concurrent chemotherapy. Protein markers for detection of recurrence and vaccines for prevention of cervical cancer are under investigation.