CERVICAL CANCER

Cancer of the cervix appears not to be related to geography, but primarily to the sexual practices in a given region or subculture. The commencement of sexual intercourse during adolescence, multiple partners, or partners who have had numerous partners are all factors associated with an increased risk of developing the disease, as is a large number of pregnancies.

Thus, cancer of the cervix is rare among nuns and common among prostitutes. A sexually transmitted virus is suspected to be a causative factor or cofactor. As with prostatic cancer, chronic cigarette smoking appears to increase the risk of occurrence of this neoplasm. Another peculiar difference, at least in the United States, is that cancer of the cervix occurs about twice as frequently among black as among white women, whereas cancer of the uterus occurs two to four times as often in white women. Cervical cancer is one of the most common types or cancer in young women and comes in many varieties. Fortunately, recent research has helped improve survival and give more hope than ever before for those stricken with cervical cancer.

It is crucial to be educated about the disease, so you can make the proper treatment choices to increase the likelihood of a happy outcome. Selecting the right treatment can literally make the difference between life and death. It is important to have the peace-of-mind of knowing that you have done everything possible to fight a cervical cancer problem successfully. The Cancer Group Institute's materials explain, in plain English, the risk factors, definition, types, frequency, symptoms, evaluation, historic and latest effective treatment for cervical cancer. We describe surgery, radiation and chemotherapy and their results, as well as combinations of these therapies. We tell you everything you need to know to help you make the right choices today for a cervical cancer problem.

Pregnancy experience in women who later developed oestrogen-related cancers.

Olsen J, Storm H. Danish Epidemiology Science Centre at the Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, University of Aarhus.

OBJECTIVES: There has been speculation that women with oestrogen-related cancers have been exposed to high levels of oestrogen in earlier life and therefore also during their pregnancies prior to the disease. For this reason we examined signs of reproductive outcome related to oestrogen exposure such as twinning, sex ratio, birth weight and congenital malformation in women who later were diagnosed with breast cancer, endometrial or ovarian cancer.

METHODS: For 5213 children born to women who later developed breast cancer, 557 children born to women who later developed ovarian cancer and 173 children born to mothers with endometrial cancers we selected as a control four times as many newborns of mothers without these cancers after matching for mothers' parity, age, date of birth and hospital attended. All data were extracted from existing nationwide files. Most of the women's reproductive lives fell within the period of the birth registry from 1973 to 1993.

RESULTS: No differences in sex ratio, birth weight or malformation were found between the newborns to cancer or control mothers in any of the cancer groups studied. The only significant findings were less than expected births of twins to mothers who later developed cancer of the ovaries and a higher proportion of newborns with a birth weight over 4000 g in the cancer corpus uterus group.

CONCLUSION: Although the amount of information is limited for endometrial and ovarian cancers, we found no strong indication of elevated oestrogen levels during pregnancy.