BK Healthline Foundation, a Koforidua based Non-Governmental Organization, in collaboration with Grace Homeopathic Clinic last Saturday organized a cervical cancer screening event for women in Koforidua and its environs.
The screening exercise which is under the theme: ‘let us save our women from cervical cancer’ was aimed at creating awareness on the deadly disease which is caused by human papilloma virus (HPV).
The human papilloma virus (HPV) is acquired through skin to skin contact with someone who has the virus during sexual intercourse and once infected, the virus could stay in the host for about 10 to 15 years before symptoms starts to show.
Symptoms of the disease include offensive discharge from the vagina, blood flow after normal menstrual period, during or after sexual intercourse and women in their menopausal age who bleed, prolonged back pains, loss of weight among others.
Touching on the essence of the exercise, the Founder and Executive Director for the Foundation, Barbara Konadu, disclosed that, the disease is killing many women and there is the need therefore to drive home the message of preventing cervical cancer.
According to her, the early signs of the cancer, which include abnormal virginal discharge, abnormal menstruation bleeding, and pain during love making among others are synonymous to sexual transmitted Infections (STI).
From this background, she explained that, many women have little or no knowledge about the cancer and rather seek for treatment of candidiasis, syphilis and gonorrhea because of their resemblance.
She is of the view that, creating awareness on the deadly disease would go a long way for women to seek early treatment because the disease is preventable. Ms Barbara Konadu averred that, cervical cancer is a public health issue and therefore requires a national response to ensure that no woman dies of it.
She mentioned that, cervical cancer is the second most frequent occurring cancer in women after breast cancer and common cause of cancer related deaths among women in developing countries.
“Current estimates in Ghana indicates that every year 3,151 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and 2,119 die from the disease, adding that, deaths due to cervical cancer are projected to rise by almost 25percent over the next 10 years hence the need for the campaign to allow for more screening.” Cervical cancer screening on a normal day goes for GH¢150.00 whilst the HPV vaccination goes for GH¢300.
On his part, Isaac Akwetey-Okunor, the Project Coordinator encouraged women particularly the young girls who are sexually active to take their reproductive health serious and desist from sharing the same used underpants.
He therefore appealed to corporate bodies and other individuals who are financially sound to support in the campaign on cervical cancer, this according to him, would help to sustain the momentum of the awareness creation to have an all year round campaign with tangible results.