Leading cause of Pinay Deaths in the Philippines? | Cervical Cancer

Yeah, it's true. According to the Department of Health (DOH), while the number of cases of cervical cancer is decreasing in developed countries like the United States, it is on the rise in the Philippines. And it's sad because Cervical Cancer is actually one of the most curable types of cancer, yet, it still ranks as one of the leading causes of death among Filipino women today.


Cervical cancer is commonly caused by the Human Papillomavirus. The HPV 16 and 18 viruses are commonly associated with the prevalence of cervical cancer among Filipino women. Risky sexual practices (condoms anyone?! ) , sexual intercourse at young ages, use of injectable contraceptives and even smoking are identified as the reasons for the development of this disease.


Though cervical cancer can be fatal if not caught in its early stages, it is very treatable and can easily be detected through a Pap Smear test. A Pap Smear Test or Pap Test is a simple procedure that tests the presence of abnormal cells in the cervix, lower part of the uterus which, according to doctors, is actually a very big help in bringing down cervical cancer cases.

“It is alarming that despite the availability of this the Pap Smear Test, many women are still not getting it as regularly as they should,” said Carmie De Leon, vice president for sales and marketing of Healthway Medical.

In observance of Women’s Month, Healthway Medical, the country’s most trusted and leading mall-based clinic, is one with the government in enjoining women to combat cervical cancer by making the public aware of the need to undergo Pap Smear Test.


“As our mission of making men and women aware of the importance of making healthy living part of every day lifestyle, we encourage women to take the Pap Smear Test every year or every 2 years. Healthway Medical offers this test in all our clinics in Metro Manila.” De Leon added.

She also adds that women should not be embarrassed to undergo the test insisting that the Pap Smear Test is relatively simple and poses no great discomfort.

Doctors advise that women 22 years old and above should undergo pap smear every year or once every three years, particularly when results are negative for three consecutive years. This ensures that the cancer is detected early while it is still treatable.

In another study done by the ICO Information Center on HPV and Cancer, 30.3M women in the Philippines ages 15 and above are at risk of developing cervical cancer. It is the 2nd most frequent cancer among women in the Philippines and is the 2nd most frequent cancer among women between the ages of 15 and 44 years of age.

De Leon added: “It is also important to get vaccinated against the Human Papillomavirus while early even if you are not at-risk.”

For more details, please contact (02) 751-4929 or visit http://www.healthway.com.ph. Healthway Medical clinics are located at the Alabang Town Center, Edsa Shangri-la, Market! Market!, Festival Mall, Healthway Manila, SM The Block and Greenbelt 5


  1. It is human nature to take care of one's self after contracting a disease. Let me share some thoughts on why there is a decrease in developed countries while cervical cancer is on the rise in the Philippines.

    The numbers given were totalities, and does not identify the social groups. I suspect that the rise in cervical cancer among women are significantly higher in classes C to E.

    The reason is simple. We do not have an effective health care system, and money is needed to have tests done. Health is expensive and it is not only in the early detection of cervical cancer, but a lot of other diseases.

    Combine this with the lack of proper education on health, and there you have it, the reason why it is higher here.

  2. It is so true Robert, an effective health insurance here can be high up, and even on my family's yearly budget we do not have insurances yet aside from Phil Health, which I hear is near to declaring bankruptcy? It's pretty sad because it's the only affordable healthcare system that those in the lower class can afford and that too will be taken away from us... :(

  3. Hi thats sad to know...cervical cancer as u said has a high resolution rate. Not only women but other family members shoukd also become aware of it and push the women to go and get a Pap smear test.
    And there should really be no stigma attached to it at all....
    Also there are vaccines for younger girls nefore they start sexual activity to control its occurence to an extent

  4. The title alone scared me, being a woman. I guess this calls for a solid information drive about cervical cancer. There's a vaccine available to prevent getting this later in life, which should be received in three doses. Women can get it from their OB doctors, as early as possible.

  5. I know at least 2 people who lost their moms to cervical cancer. It's sad that people do not know that a pap smear or a vaccine could have saved lives. I agree that we need to raise awareness regarding this. I have been regular in getting a pap smear since it's part of my APE package. I also took the vaccine before. The vaccine can be pricey, but it's a very worthy investment. The question is, what about those who cannot afford it?

  6. This is unbelievable. In Sweden is this test paid by government plus it's something you must do by law. Everyone that moves to Sweden gets a letter within the first weeks to do this test. I once had like a small change in my cells, I got really scared. But it went away by itself. Although it would've been very easy to treat with a small surgery. I can't believe that women would die from this, just because they don't have money to do this test. That's horrible!

  7. Reality can't be avoided here in the PH Sabine.. Being a Third World country, there are inevitable cases of people not knowing that they even had Cervical Cancer until it is too late. :(