International Colposcopy and LEEP Training: Participants Commit to scale up Cervical Cancer Screening
Trainees at the International Colposcopy and LEEP Training in Cameroon have been charged to translate their enthusiasm for women’s health by screening more and more women for cervical cancer. Dr. Alan Waxeman, the lead facilitator made the call at the close of the training, last April 19, 2019, at Mboppi Baptist Hospital Douala (MBHD).
According to Alan Waxeman, Emeritus Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, cervical cancer is still a public health challenge, owing to ignorance and limited access to screening services. He noted that women in countries where the trainees were from will be grateful to the invaluable contributions they will make in women’s health upon return.
Reviewing how screening has contributed in keeping cervical cancer in check to an extent in Cameroon, Florence Manjuh, Supervisor for Women’s Health Programme (WHP) of the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services, revealed that over 90,000 women have been screened for cervical cancer. She noted that for over 12 years of intervention, the programme has developed a screening and treatment protocol for cervical cancer and other health challenges affecting women.
Dr. Ajenifuja Olusegun, Gynecologic Oncologist, and facilitator revealed that cervical cancer is a leading gynecological problem in Nigeria. Being a huge reproductive health problem in low and middle-income countries due to the concentration of screening centers in urban areas and limited trained personnel, Dr. Olusegun advocates that governments should institute school-based immunization programs for girls before they reach the reproductive age; especially encouraging the uptake of the HPV vaccine.
“All forms of prevention for cervical cancer should be a matter of urgency to all and sundry given that when a woman dies from cervical cancer it has a huge burden on the family and community,” notes Dr. Olusegun.
Training health personnel to screen, manage, and treat cervical cancer can go a long way towards eradicating the condition and lessening the burden and pain bored by women. Therefore, the International Colposcopy and LEEP (Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure) Training was indeed a stitch in time.
Prof. Tih Pius Muffih, Director of Health Services, speaking on day one of the training, called on trainees to avail themselves to be tutored in order to pass the knowledge to others someday. He underlined that it only takes the multiplier effect of the training received by participants to bridge the wide gap in manpower that still exist in women’s health at the time. He equally saluted the attachment participants have for cervical cancer and women’s health in general despite very little funding from governments and donor organizations.
Some of the core modules handled at the training were epidemiology for cervical cancer, HPV virology, the role of colposcopy, screening for cervical cancer in low and middle countries, colposcopy techniques, LEEP technique, and use of mobile ODT EVA systems.
The 3-day international training from April 17-19, 2019 had participants from Cameroon, Nigeria, Sudan, and Kenya. It is worth noting that training was the brainchild of the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services and the American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology (ASCCP)
Cancer Research UK defines colposcopy as a test to have a look at the cervix in detail. The doctor or specialist nurse takes samples of any abnormal areas using a device called a colposcope.