The uterus and ovaries are counted among the internal female reproductive organs. The ovaries are located above the uterus, with one on each side, and produce sex hormones. These hormones control the changes in puberty and subsequently the monthly maturation of an egg. The Fallopian tubes ensure that the egg, or ovum, finds its way out of the ovary and into the uterus after ovulation. Then, it either encounters sperm cells, or spermatozoon, within a few hours and is fertilized, or it dies. Until its birth, the foetus matures in the uterus.
There are indications towards factors that increase the risk of cervical or ovarian cancer. However, no risk factor can be considered retroactively as the cause of a disease alone:
Diseases and medication that weaken the immune system
Environmental factors such as asbestos and other pollutants
Hereditary disposition: Gene modification which increases the carrier's personal risk of a disorder
Age over 50
Additionally for cervical cancer: common or chronic infections with human papillomavirus, or HPV, without vaccine protection. HPV viruses are among the most common causes of sexually transmitted infections. Most infections heal without consequences, but infection can become chronic and lead to an increased risk of cervical cancer.
Additionally for ovarian cancer: Infertility and childlessness are also likely to play a role while, in contrast, pregnancies and hormonal contraception lower the risk.
For several years, the HPV vaccine has been available for the prevention of cervical cancer, and it is extremely effective. It is recommended for young women (and men) between the ages of 11 and 27. The costs of the vaccinations are covered by mandatory health care insurance when administered within the scope of cantonal programmes.
Early detection of cervical cancer: Pap test
Pap test: This examination is recommended every three years for women between the ages of 21 and 70, or as recommended by your doctor. The costs are taken over by mandatory health care insurance.
Unusual bleeding, vaginal discharge, abdominal pain and weight loss (these could be symptoms of cervical cancer)
Constant pain in lower abdomen, persistent unclear indigestion, loss of appetite, unexplained weight loss, increase in abdominal girth, bleeding outside of the menstrual cycle or after menopause, and general fatigue (these could be symptoms of ovarian cancer)
It is known that the best results in the operation and treatment of a disease are achieved in hospitals with a high number of cases.
CONCORDIA has commissioned the institute B,B,S. Economic Consultants in Basel to evaluate the treatments and operations for cervical and ovarian cancer in all Swiss acute care hospitals – independently, neutrally, and according to statistical quality criteria.
The quality of inpatient treatment was assessed, along with the length of stay and the hospital costs.
During a personal conversation, we will show you, on the basis of the results, which hospitals throughout Switzerland have excelled over the years in the treatments and operations for diseases of the uterus and ovaries in terms of quality and efficiency.
Use our consulting offer to find out which hospital is most suitable for your treatment.
Naturally, you still have the choice of when and where you would like to be treated, in line with your basic and supplementary insurances.
Tumour board: Collective knowledge
A tumour board is a committee that brings together specialists from various medical disciplines to discuss the clinical situation of patients suffering from cancer and to set up an optimal treatment plan.
For operations and the treatment for uterine or ovarian diseases, we recommend a second medical opinion in order to learn about additional treatment options. If you are covered by a hospital insurance at CONCORDIA, a second medical opinion is free of charge if you apply for it via the Lucerne Cantonal Hospital (LUKS).
Exactly what form rehabilitation and aftercare will take for persons with cervical or ovarian cancer depends on the treatment, the prognosis and their state of health.
Physical recovery and rehabilitation are in the foreground, but the psychological stress must be processed. Pain and nausea can be relieved in most cases.
Further key aspects of aftercare:
Outpatient oncological follow-up checks with therapy recommendations from conventional medicine, and possibly from complementary medicine or palliative care
Possible rehabilitative measures to maintain or support your physical and psychological health
Living with a chronic illness requires very good self-management in order to be able to successfully master the various challenges in everyday life. concordiaCoach can support you in finding good solutions.
Get vaccinated against influenza in good time before the flu season. The best time is between mid-October and mid-November.
Do not hesitate to seek medical help if symptoms or complaints of any kind arise, regardless of whether a follow-up appointment is due or not.
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