Bhubaneswar: Cervical Cancer is the only cancer which can be eliminated through proper vaccination and detection. On 17th November, 2020 the World Health Organization (WHO) gave the call for elimination of Cervical cancer by the year 2030. Countries and communities around the world marked this movement with a day of action and the launch of local campaigns. AIIMS Bhubaneswar joining this global movement amid Covid-19 pandemic last year has been putting its all effort to eliminate this cancer.
This year Obstetrics and Gynaecology (O&G) Department of AIIMS Bhubaneswar has organised several awareness programmes on screening and early detection of cervical cancer. All adult women present in the Department as well as AIIMS Bhubaneswar were urged to vaccinate their daughters with Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine for primary prevention and to undergo periodic cervical cancer screening secondary prevention. Patients and their family members were educated on how screening detects precancerous lesions, that is, abnormalities in the cells of the cervix, which if left untreated, can develop into cervical cancer. When found, precancerous lesions are treated. Screening is done by pap smears, liquid based pap, VIA, VILI and HPV testing.
The Department of O&G also took the pledge to contribute to cancer cervix elimination by the 90-70-90 strategy advocated by WHO. To vaccinate 90% of girls with HPV vaccine by 15 years of age, screen 70% of women by 35 and 45 years of age and to treat 90% of the women for precancerous lesions or invasive cancers. Under the dynamic leadership of AIIMS Bhubaneswar Director and a leading medical educationist of the country Dr. Gitanjali Batmanabane, the leading healthcare institution of India has been doing free screening for women on all days from Mondays to Saturdays under BPL category. Other patients are also getting this service at a nominal cost. Similarly to create awareness for eliminating the cancer a webinar was organized by the Department of Community Medicine and Family Medicine (CMFM) of AIIMS Bhubaneswar, in collaboration with Indian Association of Preventive and Social Medicine (IAPSM) on “Cancer situation and preventive oncology in India”. This was addressed by AIIMS Bhubaneswar Director, Dr Gitanjali Batmanabane, IAPSM India President Dr Suneela Garg and NICPR New Delhi Director Dr Shalini Singh, Prof and HOD of CMFM of Bhubaneswar AIIM Dr Sonu H Subba.
Prof Saubhagya Kumar Jena, Additional Professor Dr Sweta Singh, Dr Pruthwiraj Sethi and Dr Deepthy Balakrishnan, Associate Professor Dr Jasmina Begum and Dr Subarna Mitra, Assistant Professors from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Mrs Dharitri Swain, Dr Smitha, faculty from College of Nursing and Nursing Officer Ms Rajlakshmi coordinated the whole activities.
It may be noted that Cervical cancer or cancer cervix which is the entrance to the uterus from the vagina. Cervical cancer is a major cause of cancer mortality in women. Especially in India. 90% of cervical cancers are caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), types 16 and 18 which transmits sexually. While the infection clears out in the majority of young women, in those with persistent HPV infection, it may lead to the development of cervical cancer after a long latent period.