Health & Safety

January 10, 2013

National Cervical Health Awareness Month

Maj. Shannen Wright
355th Medical Operations Squadron

January is National Cervical Health Awareness Month. The staff of D-M’s 355th Medical Group Women’s Health Clinic would like to highlight some of the new changes in the guidelines for cervical cancer screening. Pap smears now begin at age 21. Many women will be glad to know that they no longer need a pap smear every year. Recent research has determined that almost all cervical cancer is caused by the human papillomavirus. We are now routinely using a DNA test to detect the high-risk strains of HPV in women 30 and older. If your pap smear is normal, you will not need another one for three years. If you are 30 or older and both pap smear and HPV tests are negative, you will only require screening every five years. Cervical cancer develops very slowly over time and in the absence of HPV, women are not at risk. A vaccine for HPV is now available at our immunizations clinic (series of three shots over six months), for ages 9-26.

A few populations of women can discontinue getting pap smears: those who have had a total hysterectomy (uterus and cervix removed) for non-cancerous reasons and women over 65 (with past history of normal pap smears). Despite the fact that many women may not need pap smears as frequently, we will not turn women away who have other gynecological-related questions/concerns. In fact, all beneficiaries are encouraged to see a WHC provider or their PCM for an annual “Well Woman” visit. Also, birth control prescriptions are good for one year only and patients must be seen on an annual basis to ensure they are still eligible to continue the method.

The WHC manages women who have abnormal pap smears (pre-cancerous cellular changes or “dysplasia” of the cervix) in our Abnormal Pap Program. We monitor these patients very closely and perform routine surveillance at frequent intervals. In the majority of cases, the abnormalities will resolve on their own; however some women are referred to a civilian gynecologist for consultation and/or definitive treatment of moderate-severe dysplasia and then subsequently return for their follow-up pap smears in the WHC.

The WHC staff is available to answer any questions you may have about the new cervical cancer screening guidelines. Call the central appointment line at 228-2778 to schedule your appointment.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Trick-or-treat safely this Halloween

Excitement is in the air and ghosts, ghouls, monsters and princesses will be out in mass, October 31, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.. Accidents and mishaps increase during this event. To prevent them use common sense, be aware of potential hazards, and take precautions. Halloween Costume Safety: · Wear flame retardant costumes. · Hem your costumes so you don’t...
 
 

Airmen lead the way in last pre Ranger course

CREECH AIR FORCE BASE, Nevada – Twenty-one Airmen from around the Air Force were put to the test both physically and mentally in their pursuits to attend the U.S. Army Ranger school during the Ranger Assessment Course Oct. 2-16, 2014, at Silver Flag Alpha range, Nevada. The course has existed in Nevada since the early 1980s, and...
 
 

DoD urges flu shots to maintain unit health, readiness

WASHINGTON – Flu season is underway and the Defense Department is making sure service members get flu shots because the illness, often considered mild, has a significant potential to affect operational readiness in unvaccinated units, an expert from the Defense Health Agency said this week. Air Force Lt. Col. Amy Costello, a pediatrician who specializes...
 

 
(U.S. Air Force Illustration by Airman 1st Class Cheyenne Morigeau)

Don’t become a target

Considering recent threats against Americans and the exponential growth of social media use, becoming a target of an adversary is easier than ever. Operations Security is a process that identifies unclassified, critical informa...
 
 
BreastCancerAwareness_pict

An Airman’s story: My mother didn’t fight alone

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. – His green eyes frantically searched the crowd for his dying mother. During his final pass and review at basic military training (BMT) he saw her in the stands, cheering him on. A year later, ...
 
 

Fire Prevention Week 2014

(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Drzazgowski) Sparky the Fire Dog, National Fire Protection Association spokesdog, and members from the 355th Fire Emergency Services flight taught children from the Child Development Center how to stop, drop and roll at Davis-Monthan, Oct. 8. The 355th FES conducted several events in conjunction with Fire...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin