Cervical Cancer to Be Completely Eradicated in Australia.

With the HPV vaccine, Australia will be the first company to completely get rid of cervical cancer, suggested The Cancer Council.

The recent news has been described in the Lancet Public Health Journal, which established that even though global deaths from the disease still exceed 310,000 every year, Australia is heading on the path where cervical cancer would almost vanish.

This optimistic forecast is the result of introducing world-leading national human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination program for schoolchildren a decade ago. However, introducing a pap smear test in 1991 proved to be a milestone in the process of curbing cervical cancer.

In the years that came afterwards, it was noted that as the abnormalities were identified even before they were developed, cervical cancer rates dropped by 50 per cent.

Now the occurrence of cervical cancer in Australia stands at seven cases per 100,000 almost half the global average. Isn’t that amazing?

The research from Cancer Council NSW states that the most striking step-ups are yet to come, as the first recipients of the early HPV vaccination program reach their mid-thirties.

Just after two years, with only 6 new cases per 100,000 women annually, cervical cancer would be legitimately considered as rare cancer in Australia.

Only if the current praxes continue, the disease will be certainly eradicated by 2066 as there will be only one case per 100,000. By 2100 there would be just 3 deaths per million women as compared the current death rate that is 260 deaths each year today, or 21 deaths per million.

The co-inventor of the technology behind the HPV vaccine, Professor Ian Frazer believes that in the coming years, Australia and the world will get completely rid of cervical cancer.

Professor Frazer further added, “Because this human papillomavirus only infects humans and the vaccine program prevents the spread of the virus, eventually we’ll get rid of it as we did with smallpox.”

“It’s not going to happen in my lifetime, but it could happen in the lifetime of my kids if they go about it the right way.”

In 2007 the free national HPV vaccination program was first introduced to Australian school going girls and in 2013 it was expanded to boys.

However, the current vaccine functions by shielding receivers from the types of HPV that potentially causes 90% of cervical cancer worldwide. It also inhibits cases of several other cases of cancer like cancer of throat, vulva, anus, cervix, penis, and vagina, and in addition, constrains the cases of genital warts.

Director of Research at Cancer Council NSW, Professor Karen Canfell stated that even though the effect of the vaccine on cervical cancer deaths is yet to be felt, they had observed positive signs in the vaccinated group, including a drop in cervical precancerous lesions rate. Other research has noted a fall in cases of genital cases.

Although dozens of countries around the world now vaccinate their teenagers from HPV, many are still missing out as even when vaccines are offered at a lower price in developing countries, they remain relatively expensive.

Professor Canfell said, “There are now about 570,000 women worldwide diagnosed with cervical cancer a year. And 311,000 women will die from it. They are predominantly in lower and middle-income countries.”

The study also highlights the magnitude of maintaining the cervical screening regimen in Australia, which recently experienced the biennial pap smear getting replaced by HPV screening every 5 years.