Friday, February 11, 2011

An AGGIE Wearing ORANGE? Join Tamika and the Fight Against Cervical Cancer

This week I am talking about HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) and the diseases it causes. The most serious consequence of HPV infection is CANCER, and there are roughly 12,000 American women diagnosed with cervical cancer (caused by HPV) each year.
A couple weeks ago, while I was a guest on a Doctor Radio show that focused on cervical cancer, I met an amazing woman: Tamika Felder.
Tamika was diagnosed with cervical cancer at the very young age of 25, just as she was beginning to enjoy a successful career as a television producer in our nation's capitol. Her treatment included not only chemo and radiation, but also a complete hysterectomy. While friends were planning weddings and baby showers, Tamika was fighting for her life and giving up the dream of having children.
Lucky for the rest of us, Tamika's amazing spirit and talents emerged through her therapy, as she created a nonprofit organization to increase awareness about HPV and cervical cancer. In addition to public speaking, Tamika & Friends offer an online support group for women diagnosed with cervical cancer. Her mission is to spare those women newly diagnosed the shame and isolation that she endured over a decade ago. Click on her website: and read all the amazing survivor stories! Women from all backgrounds have bonded together to help other women face this challenge.
So why ORANGE? Every cancer seems to have its own color now, and Tamika wanted a color that reflected hope and positive energy, like a sunburst. Why not wear some orange this week, and pass on Tamika's message?
BOTTOM LINE: Cervical cancer is a very serious disease, and PREVENTION plus EARLY DETECTION are key! Remind your girlfriends to SCHEDULE their PAP TEST and get vaccinated against HPV!


nitaree said...

Does a women still need a yearly pelvic exam even though she has had a total hysterectomy?

You are OK. The orange you are wearing is Tennessee Orange, not that God forsaken Texas Burnt Orange.

Dr. Jill Grimes said...

Women who have had a complete hysterectomy for reasons other than cancer (so, most commonly, fibroids, for example) actually no longer need annual pelvic or pap tests, unless they have had a new sexual partner (in which case, they need to be tested for STDs.)
And really, though I'm an Aggie, I support our home team Horns (unless they are playing A&M or Notre Dame). But the orange in the picture is all about cervical cancer!