Cervical cancer could potentially be curable as long as prevention is applied at early stage, Chinese experts suggest.
Caused by certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV), which is sexually transmitted, cervical cancer is the second most common cancer in women after breast cancer. Two HPV types, namely HPV16 and HPV18, cause 70 percent of the disease, according to the World Health Organization.
"It is preventable, treatable and curable through advanced screening and vaccination," said Lang Jinghe, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Engineering and a gynecologist at Peking Union Medical College Hospital in Beijing. He made the comment on April 25, on the sideline of the 12th Annual Meeting of National Cervical Cancer Consortium & the 6th Asia-Oceania Research Organization in Genital Infection and Neoplasia Conference in Beijing.
Currently, vaccines against HPV16 and 18 have been approved for use in many countries. China's domestically-produced vaccines have already entered clinical trials.
"Medical and health services at the community level, especially screening, need to be improved," said Zhou Qi, President of Chongqing Cancer Hospital. "We hope related government departments can help set up nationwide training centers with standard treatment procedures, which could benefit more women."