Dr Francis Ajang, A consultant gynaecologist with the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) has warned that global new cervical cancer cases could reach an estimated 15 million by 2020.
Ajang made the disclosure on Friday in Fobur, Jos East Local Government during a sensitisation of rural women and girls on causes and prevention of cervical cancer.
The campaign was organised by the Yakubu Gowon Foundation (YGF).
The gynaecologist said that about 10 million new cases were recorded annually with seven million deaths each year.
“In sub-Saharan Africa, a woman dies of cervical cancer every 10 minutes. And 8,000 new cases of cervical cancer are recorded every year in Nigeria,” he said.
He explained that cervical cancer can be caused by infections in the cervix, which could be later transferred through unprotected sex.
According to him, oral sex can as well lead to throat cancer when semen is being released by the sex partner (man) into a female’s throat.
Ajang stated that avoiding unhealthy lifestyle was very important and advised women and girls to imbibe the habit of constant checkups which would help in dictating the symptoms and can also be handled in time.
The symptoms according to him include abnormal vaginal bleeding, bleeding after sex and other abnormal discharges.
Professor Theresa Madu, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University of Jos, on behalf of YGF, stressed the need for awareness on cervical cancer at the grassroots, considering the rising cases of the disease among women in Nigeria.
Madu stated that men and women need to be educated on the negative effects of cervical cancer on a family.
She charged participants to take advantage of the seminar for the good of their health and that of the country.
Dr Ngozi Agomoh, another expert emphasised the need for women to maintain good general hygiene with their genitals.
She advised them to go for breasts checkup from time to time to enable early detection of the problem.
According to her, even though it was difficult to treat cancer at its full-grown stage, it could be managed effectively if detected early.