The cervix is a small, doughnut-shaped organ located at the top of the vaginal canal, and forming the opening of the uterus.
During childbirth, the cervix dilates – meaning the doughnut hole opens up – to allow the baby to exit the uterus, into the birth canal. The cervix also dilates a tiny bit during menstruation, to allow a woman to shed her uterine lining as period blood.
Women sometimes report symptoms resulting from cervical conditions, but in many cases there are no immediate symptoms. The cervix is very difficult to view without a gynaecologist’s tools thus it’s essential to routinely visit your gynaecologist to check up on the health of your cervix.
If your pap smear comes back as abnormal, the most likely cause is cervical dysplasia. Dysplasia is a condition of abnormal cellular growth on the cervix, which is the canal between the vagina and uterus.
Dysplasia often results from HPV (human papillomavirus), a very common sexually transmitted virus.
Although cervical dysplasia is usually asymptomatic, it’s important to diagnose and treat the condition to reduce the risk of cervical cancer. Dysplasia can range from mild to severe cases, and treatments vary depending on the case.
Dysplasia is usually caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is a common sexually transmitted virus that can be passed from person to person during vaginal, anal, and oral sex. Both women and men can be infected with HPV.
Because HPV is typically asymptomatic, many people may be infected with the virus without realising it. In fact, most sexually active people will get it at least once in their lives, but won’t know because their immune systems clear it before it becomes a problem.
However, in cases where it cannot, the virus will cause dysplasia in the cervix. People with weakened immune systems are most at risk.
There are over 100 strains of HPV, but the two most dangerous types are HPV 16 and 18. Both are strongly linked to cervical cancer in women.
Come & meet one of our highly trained team at London Obs & Gynae Clinic to discuss any concerns you have regarding Cervical Dysplasia
Any condition that suppresses the immune system will increase the likelihood that HPV will cause dysplasia of the cervix. These include:
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