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Know the Facts: Cervical Cancer Prevention

You know a scientist has done something big when he wins the Nobel Prize. Usually, however, that discovery is a breakthrough that, while important, probably didn't affect your life that much.


Not this time.

The work for which German professor Harald zur Hausen, MD, received the 2008 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine may save the lives of millions of women around the world, including some in your own family. Dr. zur Hausen discovered that the human papillomavirus (HPV) caused cervical cancer, the second most common cancer in women worldwide. His discovery made it possible to test for the virus that causes cervical cancer and to vaccinate against this same virus.

Yes, thanks to a man most women never heard of, our daughters and granddaughters may come of age in a world in which their risk of getting cervical cancer is as low as our risk of getting polio. Read more about preventing cervical cancer and share what you've learned with the women in your life.

Another way to spread awareness about cervical cancer prevention is by wearing a Pearl of Wisdom pin. In honor of Mother's Day, the Pearl of Wisdom campaign is giving away 500 free Pearl of Wisdom pins to randomly selected visitors who register at its website before April 27. The pins are also available for purchase and all proceeds go to the U.S. Pearl of Wisdom Campaign Fund, which supports U.S.-based cervical cancer prevention activities.

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