Dear Cervix

Dear Cervix,

You are a part of the body many women don’t often think about or properly understand.

As parts of the body go I think you are pretty fab. You provide a fairly reliable fertility indicator- high soft open being most fertile time and low firm closed being least fertile time. (In fact that reminds me I must finish my letter to natural contraceptive methods which I started ages ago thanks to a discussion on twitter with @motherscuffer).  If you have never realised such a thing about the cervix then I suggest you check out  the awesome photos from My Beautiful Cervix project which details cervices (I made that plural up I think) at different times of the month.

Cervix- you dilate to an enormous 10cm during labour to allow a baby to travel out, but the rest of the time you are mostly small and closed to help prevent infections entering the womb. You amaze me but unfortunately  sometimes your cells change and become pre-cancerous or even cancerous. Which is why in the UK women are offered routine smear tests every 3years.

Today is my day for such a test. My first since I had kids. Before kids my uterus was retroverted meaning my cervix was never where the nurse expected it resulting in a good old somewhat ouchy furkle to find it.  So I have no idea how today’s will be but I do it because it’s an important test to have.

As an aside, I am so so glad that my girls will be offered the human papilloma virus (HPV) jab as HPV being one of the main causes of Cervical Cancer, and I am bloody glad that the Department of Health finally realised it’s mistake in offering Cevarix (which only protects against the strains of HPV causing cancer) and are now offering the much more effective Gardasil which also protects against the two strains of the  (HPV) that cause 70% of cervical cancers and also two other strains that produce 90% of genital warts (read more here).  Genital warts being one of the STI’s NOT always being protected against transmission by using a condom (herpes and pubic lice being the other two).  I do think boys should possibly also be offered the jab but it’s cost effectiveness remains to be seen.  I’m not sure what this will mean for my girls cervical screening program when they are older, but I am relieved that they live in an age where such cancers are becoming preventable and much more treatable.

So anyhow dear cervix- tis time for me to wander off and have you examined.  I hope you will be easily locatable for once (If I can find you easily now am hoping the nurse will!) and I hope your cells are the same as they always are. But if they are not we will deal with that if it happens.

Lots of CellularLove



14 responses to “Dear Cervix

  1. Best of luck! I come from a family where cervical cells seem destined to change, and require treatment – and despite the embarrassment of having to present one’s fanoir for inspection, it is infinitely preferable to dying because of that embarrassment.

    I am so thankful for the invention of the vaccination. Hopefully it will reduce The Daughter’s – and The Niece’s- chances of needing treatment in the future. Then again, we can hope by the time they reach adulthood a cure or total vaccination for cervical cancer will have been found.

    Remember – don’t hide your pants 😉

    • I rather like Fanoir! Better than which my daughter seems to use at mo! I’m a fanjo fan too!

      The nurse said I could keep my jeans on one leg!? That was odd- was harder to keep em on! At least it meant I didn’t lose me pants.

  2. I just got the all-clear after my first check after conization for CIN III came back positive (but for boring warty HPV 6 and not any of the cancery ones). The gyn offered me the vaccination (which seems like bolting the stable door a bit), but I’d have to pay the full whack, so I’m not sure.

    I am glad that girls in the future will have this protection, I fervently hope that they vaccinate boys. After all, boys sometimes have sex with boys and sometimes also with older women. They also contract penile cancer sometimes after they get HPV. If they can obliterate this bs, I’d be very happy.

    • Yeah I know lots of ladies now positive for HPV being offered the vaccine- maybe it would help it get any worse or protect you from other ones that together make double trouble or something? Worth looking into.

      re. boys- I guess they are thinking eventually genital warts will be wiped out through herd immunity of the girls but it doesn’t count the MSM so that is an issue. I think they should vaccinate all.

      • I guess if I only caught the warty HPV, they could protect me against the cancery ones?? Or maybe they can make me immune to the strains I had because they have now been physically removed from my body??? I have no idea.

        Boys will only get herd immunity from girls if they only have sex with their peers. If they have sex with women who were too old for the vaccines when they came out, they’re going to be 80%ers like well… like 80% of the old folks. Which could lead to cancer, warts and also transmitting the infection to girls who haven’t been vaccinated but may suddenly not be screened as enthusiastically as now.

  3. Have had multiple ‘orrible treatments for level 3 CIN cells… And am so glad they were detected early. Ironically enough they were only detected so early because I was part of the clinical study for the HPV vaccine, and if I’d been living in England I’d probably not have had them detected until this year.

  4. Pingback: Some musings on the HPV Vaccine | Sex Positive Parenting

  5. And yes, cervices is the correct plural 🙂

  6. You will all be pleased to know- got my results back – all clear.

  7. Pingback: Dear Vagina | Letters From LadyCurd

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