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Monday, June 1, 2015

GSK partners with VMV Hypoallergenics to spread awareness on cervical cancer

I had a friend who died of cervical cancer. She was in her 30s when we first met. She was healthy to begin with, had an active lifestyle,  not the one who would get the dreaded disease. No signs of pain whatsoever, until she complained of severe pelvic pain in her early 50s and died 3 years after. She was diagnosed Stage 4.  I was just speechless. There was a time I asked if she had her pap smear done annually. She told me she never had after giving birth to her youngest,  because she felt well and that she had no time for OB Gyne check up and she was busy with children and work. If she had diagnosed and treated earlier, she would have live longer. With all our busy schedules, always find time to visit your OB Gyne, have a regular pap smear and ask for a cervical vaccine.

GSK Philippines partners with VMV Hypoallergenics in raising cervical cancer awareness last May 28 at Isabela Ballroom, Makati Shangri-la. and help women put on their power pout against cervical cancer. The campaign was hosted by MTV VJ TV Host Ms. Andi Manzano and graced by cervical cancer survivor guests and doctor panels from GSK. I learned a lot about the informative talk, how at an early stage you can get infected by HPV(human papilloma virus) and made it to a full blown cervical cancer.

The Power Over Cervical Cancer campaign urges Filipinas to realize that they are empowered—that they can do something to prevent the disease from happening to them, so they don’t miss out on a colorful life ahead or leave their loved ones behind.

Cervical cancer occurs when abnormal cells develop and spread in the cervix, the entrance between the vagina and the uterus.  The human papillomavirus (HPV), a very common virus, is the necessary cause of cervical cancer. It has been shown that 99.7 percent of cervical cancer patients are positive for HPV infection.  It is also estimated that up to 80 percent of women will be infected with HPV at some point in their lives.

While HPV is primarily transmitted via sexual intercourse, skin-to-skin genital contact is also a recognized mode of transmission. , ,  Lifestyle changes can help prevent the development of cervical cancer, such as being conscientious about one’s sexual activities. Beyond regular consultations and pap smears by your OB-GYN, vaccines that protect against cancer-causing HPV are also now readily available.

A risk regardless of age
Based on a study of 307 women in Ontario, the incidence of cancer-causing HPV infection is actually highest at the young ages of 15-19.  The World Health Organization Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (WHO-SAGE) on Immunization reiterates the importance of getting young girls protected through HPV immunization before their first exposure to HPV (i.e. before sexual contact), as young as 9 years old. ,

What about older women? The risk of persistent infection with cancer-causing HPV (which is necessary for cervical cancer to develop) increases with age, and is highest when a woman is over 66 years old.  Thus, screening is recommended starting age 21 to detect cervical abnormalities that precede actual cervical cancer.  Vaccination remains to be recommended for older women to prevent new HPV infections.

Purple lips against cervical cancer

“Cancer is quite a distant concept for women who are well. What might be more important to them is keeping up with the latest trends, especially in fashion and beauty. The lipstick is a woman’s own—when she wears it, she makes a statement about herself. Through this partnership with VMV, we hope to drive women to make a statement against cervical cancer,” says Mark Castillo, GSK product manager.
Jacklyn Remo, assistant marketing manager for VMV Hypoallergenics, supports the movement: “We are fully committed toward this partnership with GSK Philippines. At VMV Hypoallergenics, we promise the safest, most proven effective care on the planet—and that extends to beauty. This unique combination of science, wellness and beauty means we also strongly stand for advocacies that help women, their health and happiness.”

JOIN THE MOVEMENT NOW—take a photo of yourself wearing VMV Hypoallergenics’ Tutu or Chorus Line lipstick (or a photo of you holding your kiss mark from the lipstick) and post it on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtags #PowerPout and #PowerOverCervicalCancer!

A health service message brought to you by GSK. For further information on cervical cancer, please consult your doctor.

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