CANCER AND AGING: CERVICAL AND OVARIAN CANCERS

Cervical Cancer
The number of women this disease killed in the United States dropped from 8,487 in 1960 to 4,627 in 1990. A major cause was early detection with the help of Pap tests and treatment with surgery. There is controversy about the effectiveness of Pap tests, but deaths from cervical and uterine cancers have fallen more than 70 percent since the introduction of the tests in the 1950s, reports the College of American Pathologists. Sexually active women (especially those with more than one partner) would do well to have three successive yearly Pap tests. If each test result is negative, a test every three years is then advised.
Genital warts (papilloma) warn women to get a Pap test. The warts are caused by viruses that may also cause cervical cancer. Prompt removal of these warts is urged for men and women.

Ovarian Cancer
Can screenings detect ovarian cancer early enough to remove it? Dr. Eyre says researchers are trying to determine that answer: “We are testing the effectiveness of pelvic exams, a blood test for a substance called CA 125, as well as a sonar examination of the ovaries.”
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