A woman will aware more about her health, after she realized of having strange feeling on her reproducing organs. She still kept the feeling for a long time, and finally gave up and went to see doctor, until later the doctor diagnosed her illness as cervical cancer in advanced stage.
In Surabaya, there were lots of women who had been detected of having pre-cancerous processes of cervical cancer, a cancer that forms in the tissues of the cervix, the organ connecting the uterus and vagina. Cervical cancer is often caused by Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) infection. Cervical cancer is a slow growing cancer type, it may not have any symptoms. It can be detected with regular Pap tests, or Pap Smear, a procedure in which cells are scraped from the cervix and looked at under a microscope.
But Public Health Service of Surabaya City had already used the
see and treat program, an examination of the cervix using VIA (Visual Inspection with Acetic-acid) method. VIA , a method of applying acetic-acid 3% to 5% in the cervical region. Via was also known as an alternative to cytology in screening for cervical cancer in poorly resourced locations. After 2 minutes of observation, it will be seen the color changes of the cervix.
If a white spot is seen, it shows the existence of pre-cancerous lesions. VIA term will be positive, Sri explained.
Since January to June 2012, there were 2,561 women recorded of having the examination. Among them, 284 women were VIA-positive. The rest, 2,277 women had been detected as VIA-negative, and in safe condition.
Those who had positive results were sent to the hospital to get treatment with cyrotherapy, said the Head of Health Services, Public Health Service of Surabaya City, Sri Setyani, MD.
If the pre-cancerous signs are detected, VIA-positive, the patients will soon be treated, so that the symptoms are not growing to the next level.
For an VIA-positive, the treatment is cryotherapy by using a cyro gun, Sri added. Cryotherapy, a form of therapy consisting in the local or general use of cold. Cryotherapy is used to treat a variety of benign and malignant lesions. The therapy aims to kill the abnormal cells by freezing it.
Medical cryotherapy gun
If only for the examination, all of the medical staff of Public Health Clinics on every districs are able to do so. However, cryotherapy with cyro gun can be done in several Public Health Clinics.
This condition is associated with the limited tools of Cyro gun. Patients from another health center are referred to one of the 5 Public Health Clinics which have the tools to cryotherapy, Sri added.
Compared to Pap Smear, VIA is simpler and does not require much equipment.
The price is cheaper than the Pap Smear. The result can be known without a laboratory tests, while the accuracy rate reaches 60 to 90%, explained Sri.
The sooner the condition of the sex organs are known, the cyrotherapy can be done immediately. It is useful to prevent advanced stage patients, Sri added.
Various efforts have been made by the Public Health Service of Surabaya City, in order to make easier for all women who wanted her intimate organs to be examined, including the recent opening of 2
see and treat program checkpoints. One in a traditional market of Pucang, Surabaya. The other in Darmo Trade Center, one of the most visited mall by women in Surabaya.
In my own opinion, the Public Health Service of Surabaya City acts was very precisely. But, I guess not all women, even for some well educated women still don't know about the benefits of having Pap Smear or VIA test. Another problem is that, whether using Pap Smear or VIA test, if lots of women do not want to be examined, because of feeling shy.
- Images from Wikimedia.org.
- Jawa Pos, Metropolis, July 31, 2012, pages 40.
- National Library of Medicine
2011 Medical Subject Headings
- National Cancer Institute
- The Lancet, Volume 353, Issue 9156, Page 869, 13 March 1999
Visual inspection with acetic acid for cervical cancer screening: test qualities in a primary care setting