Cervical Cancer Awareness Month Image

January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

Most cervical cancers are caused by human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus that is passed from person to person during sex. Two screening tests can help prevent cervical cancer. The Pap test looks for cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated, and the HPV test looks for the virus that can cause these cell changes. HPV vaccines can protect women against the types of HPV that cause most cervical cancers. When cervical cancer is found early, it is highly treatable. The most important thing you can do to help prevent cervical cancer is to get screening tests regularly starting at age 21.

Key Facts

  • Most women don’t need a Pap test every year! If your test results are normal, you may be able to wait 3 years between tests.
  • HPV is the main cause of cervical cancer. Get kids vaccinated against HPV at age 11-12 to help prevent cervical cancer.
  • Early cervical cancer may not cause symptoms. Advanced cervical cancer may cause abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge.
  • If your test results are not normal, talk to your doctor. Cervical cancer is highly curable when found and treated early.

Prevention Tips

  • The most important thing you can do to help prevent cervical cancer is to get screened regularly.
  • If you’re 26 years old or younger, get the HPV vaccine.
  • Use condoms during sex.
  • Limit your number of sexual partners.
  • Don’t smoke.
Faster Diagnostic Testing for Breast Cancer

Faster Diagnostic Testing for Breast Cancer

October is breast cancer awareness month and Comanche County Memorial Hospital, is the only hospital to offer the fastest testing for breast cancer in southwest Oklahoma.

In the past when a patient had a mammogram and a lump was found, the tissue taken from the biopsy would be sent out of state for pathologists to examine. That could take up to a week. But if the patient needed additional testing, it could take even longer.

Now CCMH offers this type of testing on site. Patients can have the diagnosis of cancer within 24 – 48 hours.

Dr. Carol Dittmann is the Chief of Pathology at Comanche County Memorial Hospital. She says decreasing the time they inform the patient of a diagnosis of cancer is crucial.

“From the point the patient has an abnormal mammogram to the point of seeing the oncologist and making treatment plans and decisions, we aim for that to be less than a week,” Dr. Dittmann said. “With this new technology in house, we are able to achieve that.”

Dr. Dittmann wants to remind people that breast cancer can happen to both men and women, and that this new technology can help everyone in the community. She says to keep up with your yearly mammograms and to get checked out if you feel a lump in your breasts.

To schedule an appointment to get a mammogram, you can call the McMahon Center for Breast Health at 580-250-5856.

Cancer Centers of Southwest Oklahoma

Advanced Brachytherapy Radiation Treatments Now at Our Lawton Facility

The Cancer Centers of Southwest Oklahoma would like to announce the addition of High Dose Rate (HDR) Brachytherapy treatments for gynecological cancers at our Lawton facility. We have added a Nucletron Microselectron 6 channel HDR unit and are ready to begin treating patients with cervical and uterine cancers. This additional treatment option will be of great benefit to patients in Southwest Oklahoma who will no longer have to make the long drive out of town to receive this type of Radiation Therapy.

Delivering these treatments will be Dr. J. Michael Kerley and Dr. M. Leann Smith. Dr. Kerley has over 20 years experience with HDR Brachytherapy performing a variety of procedures. Those procedures include skin treatments, prostate, lung, and gynecological tumors.

Dr. Smith joins our practice after completing her training from the University of Oklahoma at the Stevenson Cancer Center in Oklahoma City, OK. Both physicians have extensive training and knowledge in delivering Brachytherapy treatments and are enthusiastic to begin offering this treatment locally.

To schedule a potential patient please call 580.536.2121, Monday through Friday between 8 AM and 5 PM and our scheduler will be happy to set up the consultation appointment with either Dr. Kerley or Dr. Smith. Additionally, both physicians can be reached at this number if you would like to speak to them personally about a particular patient or with questions about our Brachytherapy program.

 

Cancer Centers of Southwest Oklahoma

www.cancercentersswok.com