India sees upto 25% of the world’s cervical cancer related deaths, yet controversies surrounding the HPV vaccine has ensured its not part of the immunisation programme.

Watch Large number of cervical cancer deaths in India but HPV vaccine not prevalentImage for representation.
Delve Sexual Health Tuesday, July 31, 2018 - 22:03

The waiting room at the hospital is crowded, buzzing with women and children. “Dr Hema will be with you shortly, she has to attend to some patients and make a few calls first,” the receptionist informs us. Dr Hema Divakar has been at the forefront of the battle, lobbying for the Human Papillomavirus vaccine, which protects against cervical cancer, to be included into the government’s immunisation scheme.

Cervical cancer is the cancer of the cervix – the opening of the uterus – and it roughly affects 1.2 lakh Indian women annually, with over 25% of the world’s cervical cancer-related deaths being reported in India alone.

“Of late, we have noticed that the annual rise of patients being detected, Indian women being detected with cervical cancer, is more than 1 lakh and the annual death rate is more than 75,000,” says Dr Sapna Lulla, an Obstetrician and Gynecologist at Motherhood Hospitals in Bengaluru.

But even with these numbers, doctors find it difficult to convince women to get screened for the cancer.

“Convincing a woman that she needs to be tested for cervical cancer is a challenge for there are almost symptoms that can be seen in this kind of cancer,” says Dr Chethana of the Indian Cancer Society.

The Human Papillomavirus, or HPV, has been found to be the largest cause of cervical cancer and sexual activity is the primary route of transmission of the virus. The HPV vaccine offers protection against various strains of the virus, and yet, for a number of reasons, there has been a lot of conjecture about the same, and hesitancy to include it in the government’s immunisation program.

Why? Watch this video to find out:

Cervical cancer and it's rise in India: Why isn't HPV vaccine part of immunisation schedule?

Cervical cancer and it's rise in India: Why isn't HPV vaccine part of immunisation schedule?

Posted by TheNewsMinute on Tuesday, 31 July 2018


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