Cervical cancer can affect people at any age but affects people at primarily 30 – 45 years of age. In the UK, our very successful cervical screening programme is estimated to save over 4,000 lives each year. Most cervical cancers are caused by a common sexually transmitted infection called human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is a group of viruses, of which there are more than 100 different types, and a number of these viruses, known as High Risk HPV can infect the cervix and cause no visible symptoms. If the body is unable to clear High Risk HPV, there is a risk of abnormal cells developing, which could become cancerous over time.
There is a lot of misinformation and stigma surrounding HPV, it is spread during sexual skin-to-skin contact, which is why it is important to get vaccinated if applicable, and go for your cervical screening, if applicable, even if you have not had penetrative sex. The UK government offers a HPV vaccination to all children at 11-12 years old.
This year, we have created a whole host of information around cervical cancer and its prevention for the transgender, non-binary and intersex communities:
We also have a series of information, Myths and Truths, from 2019 where we bust the myths around HPV. So watch our videos, get informed, and if you are due, book your cervical screening appointment: