January is National Cervical Health Awareness Month. With all women being at risk for cervical cancer, it’s important to be mindful of the health risks, symptoms, and resources available to those in need. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year, and about 4000 women die from it annually.

The main cause of cervical cancer is human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus that can be passed between people during sex. HPV is so common that most people will have it at some point during their lives without ever developing symptoms. About 90% of cases are cleared naturally by the immune system within two years; however, there is no way of knowing which individuals will go on to develop health problems. Some strains of HPV can cause warts around genitals or in one’s throat, while others can cause normal cells in the body to turn abnormal—possibly leading to cancer over time. Other factors that can

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According to the National Cancer Institute, Prostate cancer is a cancer that forms in the tissues of the prostate gland that usually affects older men. What is the prostate gland? From the Prostate Cancer Foundation: “The normal prostate is a small, squishy gland about the size of a walnut. It sits under the bladder and in front of the rectum…It seems to supply substances that facilitate fertilization and sperm transit and survival.” Prostate cancer affects 1 in 6 men, making it the most common non-skin cancer in America. There are a number of factors that can increase your risk of prostate cancer, including:

  • Age – More than 65% of all prostate cancers are diagnosed in men over age 65.
  • Race – African-American men are more likely to develop prostate cancer and are 2.5 times more likely to die from the disease.
  • Genetics – You are twice as likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer if your father or brother has the disease.
  • Geography – Living above 40 degrees latitude (north of Philadelphia for example) raises your risk of dying from prostate cancer due to inadequate sunlight, and therefore vitamin D levels, during the winter months.

Symptoms of prostate cancer vary from patient to patient. Common symptoms include frequent urination, difficulty urinating including weak or interrupted flow or painful or burning sensation, and blood in urine or semen among others.

What Help is Available?

We have many resources for prostate cancer listed on the NeedyMeds website. Our prostate cancer information page is the best place to start. This page lists

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