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Cervical cancer: Early detection is the key to survival

Cervical cancer is a potentially life-threatening illness, but it is highly preventable and very treatable in its early stages. Cervical cancer develops in the cervix, which is a section of the uterus. It's caused by human papillomavirus, HPV, which comes in over 100 strains.

There are around 30 forms that can cause cancer. You typically get the virus through sexual contact with a partner. Some people have no symptoms, while others develop genital warts as a response to the virus.

In most cases, people who develop cancer from this virus may not have any symptoms. Later on, they may have unusual bleeding from the vagina along with pelvic pain. It's usually discovered through a routine pap smear. If it comes back with abnormal results, you may need to have a biopsy of the cervix to determine if you have cancer. If you do, then there are a number of different treatment options, including surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy or a combination of these treatments.

With early treatment, survival rates are extremely high. The 5-year survival rate for those with stage 0 cervical cancer is 93 percent. Those with stage IVA or IVB cancer, the most advanced levels, have a 5-year survival rate of 16 and 15 percent, respectively.

The difference in survival rates shows why early detection is so important. If your medical provider fails to diagnose you despite signs and symptoms of this serious illness, your attorney can help you fight back. You deserve to get the treatment you need without having to worry about supporting yourself or your family. Our website has more information on the steps to take next.

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