Prevalence of cervical cancer in Oman
There are 1.15 million women in Oman who are 15 years of age or older and at risk of developing cervical cancer. According to current statistics, 50 women die from the disease each year while 88 people receive a cervical cancer diagnosis. According to OPALBIOPHARMA company’s statistics, the fourth most common cancer among women in Oman and the third most common among those between the ages of 15 and 44 is cervical cancer. The prevalence of HPV in Oman’s general population is not yet known. However, in Western Asia, where Oman is located, it is estimated that 2.5% of women in the general population are infected with cervical HPV 16 or 18 at any given time and that HPVs 16 or 18 are responsible for 72.4% of invasive cervical malignancies.
What is cervical cancer?
Cancer is a condition in which the body’s cells proliferate unchecked. Even if it later spreads to other body areas, cancer is always designated after the area of the body where it first develops. Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that first appears in the cervix. The vagina (birth canal) and the top portion of the uterus are joined by the cervix. When a woman is pregnant, the baby develops in the uterus (also known as the womb).
who is in danger?
Every woman runs the risk of developing cervical cancer. The majority of those who are afflicted are women over 30. The main cause of cervical cancer is a long-term infection with a particular type of human papillomavirus (HPV). The HPV virus is typically passed from one person to another during sexual intercourse. While at least half of sexually active individuals will have HPV at some point in their lives, only a small percentage of women will develop cervical cancer.
The human papillomavirus (HPV), a typical virus that can be transmitted from one person to another through intercourse, is the main cause of nearly all cervical malignancies. HPV, there are numerous varieties. While other HPV kinds might result in genital or skin warts, other HPV types can affect a woman’s cervix in ways that may eventually lead to cervical cancer.
Cervical cancer can develop at any point along the cervix. The cervix connects the vaginal and uterine cavities. It is a reproductive system component also known as the womb’s neck. Almost all cervical cancers are caused by an infection with the human papillomavirus.
Germination of cervical cancer
Healthy cells grow and multiply at a predictable rate before dying at a predictable time. The mutations cause the cells to grow and multiply uncontrollably, and they do not die. The abnormal cells that are accumulating form a mass. Cancer cells invade nearby tissues and can break away from a tumor to spread to other parts of the body. This means that other factors, such as your environment or lifestyle choices, influence your risk of developing cervical cancer.
Symptoms of cervical cancer
Cervical cancer alterations rarely result in symptoms. A cervical screening test is the only method to find out whether there are abnormal cells that could turn cancerous. The following are the most typical symptoms if early cell alterations progress to cervical cancer:
In the vaginal canal
Ø Menstrual bleeding lasts longer or is thicker than usual.
Ø Pain during sexual activity
Ø bleeding following a sexual act
You may notice a change in your vaginal discharge, such as increased discharge or discharge that is visibly or drastically different from normal bleeding in the vagina after menopause.
Prevention of cervical cancer
The most practical preventions of cervical cancer during the OPALBIOPHARMA company’s research are these cases:
- Consult the doctor about the HPV vaccine to reduce the risk of cervical cancer. Getting vaccinated against HPV may lower the risk of cervical cancer.
- Have Pap tests regularly. Pap tests can detect precancerous cervix conditions, allowing them to be monitored or treated to prevent cervical cancer.
- Engage in safe sex by using a condom every time having sex and limiting the number of sexual partners.
- You should not smoke. Don’t start smoking if you don’t already. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about quitting methods.
Cigarette smoking is another major risk factor for cervical cancer. There is some evidence that women who have used the contraceptive pill for five years or more are more likely to develop cervical cancer in people infected with HPV. The risk is low, and taking the pill has been shown to lower the risk of other cancers such as ovarian and uterine.
Cervical cancer awareness in OMAN
In OMAN, 494 people in total took part in the study. There were 157 female students from all nine colleges among the 204 gynecological outpatients, and 133 female employees, and The participants were initially questioned about their familiarity with cervical cancer. 29 more questions were then asked to gauge their degree of understanding regarding Pap smears, HPV, and cervical cancer. According to the findings, 97.7%, 79.4%, and 75.2%, respectively, of the staff, outpatients, and students had heard about cervical cancer.
The significant majority of outpatients (40.2%) cited television as their primary source of information, while 35.8% said they learned about cervical cancer online, followed by 34.8% who said they learned about it from a hospital or clinic. The most popular source among both staff and students was either a school or a college. Hospitals or clinics, which were also a significant source of information for employees, were followed by the internet, which was also a significant source of information for students. In terms of percentages, participants from the three groups—outpatients, employees, and students—least frequently chose radio as their information source. The remainder of the participants claimed that they learned about cervical cancer through other sources, like family, friends, and prints.
Pap smear test
With 55.4% and 53.4%, respectively, of outpatients and staff having a sufficient understanding of cervical cancer symptoms and indicators, the least knowledgeable group was the students. All three categories had a much lower understanding of risk factors compared to signs and symptoms, with outpatients having a somewhat greater percentage than staff.
Outpatients had a percentage of 35.8%, staff had a percentage of 33.8%, and students had a percentage of only 15.3%. With percentages of 56.9% and 56.4%, respectively, the awareness of Pap smear among outpatients and staff was nearly similar. Only 23.6% of students, however, were aware of Pap smears. The overall knowledge among outpatients, staff, and students was 38.7%, 35.3%, and 7.6%, respectively, after computing the cumulative score for a total of 29 questions.
Education Influences Cancer Awareness
With a P-value of 0.003, the connection between outpatients’ greatest level of education and their general awareness of cervical cancer was significant. With a percentage of 61.5% for each, it was discovered that outpatients with medical university degrees and postgraduates were the most aware of cervical cancer and cervical Pap smear. Furthermore, 46.2% of non-medical university graduates who were outpatients were deemed to have the appropriate knowledge.
Conversely, outpatients with lower levels of schooling exhibited substantially lower knowledge levels. In the groups of outpatients with no education, just primary education, only preparatory education, and only secondary education, the percentages of appropriate knowledge were 16.7%, 0.0%, 21.4%, and 28.8%, respectively. It was discovered that employees’ educational backgrounds ranged from undergraduate to postgraduate.
With a P-value of 0.151, the association between educational level and general knowledge was unimportant. However, the postgraduate population had the highest percentage of competent individuals at 41.7%. No P-value was shown to examine the significance of the relationship between knowledge and educational levels because all of the students were undergraduates (100 percent). Only 7.6% of them have the necessary knowledge, though.
With a P-value of 0.048, the connection between outpatients’ marital status and their general awareness of cervical cancer was significant. When compared to single women, the percentage of married outpatients who had appropriate general knowledge was found to be 39.9% was 0.0%.
In contrast, with P-values of 0.056 and 0.279, respectively, the relationship between participants’ general knowledge and their married status was unimportant for both staff and students. In comparison, only 8.3% of unmarried students and none of the married students were deemed to have acceptable knowledge, compared to 44.6% of unmarried employees and 28.6% of married women.
The study’s findings also revealed a substantial correlation between outpatients’ educational background and their knowledge of cervical cancer and Pap tests, with this correlation being significantly higher among those with postgraduate degrees and both medical and non-medical university degrees.
It is significant to remember that Pap smears are free in Oman because the Ministry of Health funds them. Additionally, since the Ministry of Education oversees the whole Omani educational system, education is free of charge in all schools from kindergarten through grade 12.
The majority of Muslim women in the OMAN region marry between the ages of 20 and 26. In other countries, however, sexual activity begins at the age of 18 with multiple partners. The main reason for the disparity in HPV prevalence and age distribution could be due to sexual conservative norms.
Cervical cancer is curable, but whether it disappears permanently is dependent on several factors. The chances improve with early detection and a favorable response to cancer treatment. Hopefully, according to the American Cancer Society, doctors will diagnose approximately 14,480 cases of cervical cancer in 2021.