Cancers of the Reproductive System
Approximately every 6.4 minutes, a woman in the United States will be diagnosed with a cancer of the reproductive organs -- ovarian, uterine, cervical, vulvar, vaginal, or tubal. In 2009, there were 42,160 new cases of uterine cancer with 7,780 resulting deaths and 12,900 new cervical cancer cases resulting in 4,400 deaths.
Ovarian cancer is the most feared of gynecological cancers afflicting women in the United States due to its high mortality rate; in 2009, over 21,000 cases were reported, 15,000 of which resulted in death. Yet, for the year 2001, out of the $256 million congressional medical research & development funds distributed amongst several cancer-specific funds, only $12 million was dedicated to ovarian cancer research.
Some good news: since 1940, the incidence of cervical cancer in the United States has decreased by over 70%. However, those numbers could shrink even further, if second-hand smoke could be eliminated, as there is a strong link between tobacco smoke in the environment (ETS) and cervical cancer.
As serious as the statistics in the U.S. are, women in developing countries face even greater challenges. According to the Reproductive Health Outlook (RHO), cervical cancer kills some 200,000 women in developing countries each year. It is the third most common cancer overall and the leading cause of death from cancer among women in developing countries. Out of the 370,000 new cases identified each year, 80 percent are in developing countries.
PeaceKeeper begs you not to wait for September (Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month) to educate yourself and your loved ones! Early detection can help a woman take action towards future prevention and cure.
Actions, Information & Opportunities to Help
Many sites, both comprehensive and single-issue, dedicated to informing, organizing and analyzing. Some interesting theoretical sociological pieces, and cultural studies, lots of published news articles and campaign info.
- American Cancer Society
- The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG)
- Congressionally Directed Research Funding: Ovarian Cancer
- National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program
- Health Effects of Exposure to Environmental Tobacco Smoke
- What You Can Do About Second-Hand Smoke
- The Gilda Radner Familial Ovarian Cancer Registry
- National Cervical Cancer Coalition
- Reproductive Health Outlook
- Ovarian Cancer National Alliance
- Ovarian Cancer Research Fund
- Women's Cancer Network
- Celebrities at the Courage Awards