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September is Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month

Chicago, IL - Planned Parenthood of Illinois (PPIL) is celebrating Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month this September by encouraging women to visit their health care provider to receive preventative gynecologic cancer screenings and treatment.

According to the American Cancer Society, 78,490 women in the United States were diagnosed with a gynecologic cancer such as cervical, ovarian, uterine, vaginal and vulvar cancer in 2008; 28,490 died from one of these diseases.

“While gynecological cancers are prevalent, many can be preventable,” said Steve Trombley, PPIL President and CEO. “It is imperative that women make regular visits to their health care providers for preventative screenings so that abnormal cells are detected before cancer develops. At PPIL, we are committed to providing women with the information and access to services they need to stay safe and healthy.”

PPIL’s 19 health centers offer comprehensive reproductive health care services to help screen for and prevent gynecological cancers including routine Pap tests and evaluation and management of abnormal Pap tests. Last year, PPIL provided nearly 22,000 Pap tests to women across the state.  Women should get annual Pap tests starting at age 21, or within three years of becoming sexually active, whichever occurs first.

PPIL also offers the HPV vaccine, which protects against the types of HPV that most often cause cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers. HPV, a common sexually transmitted infection, affects 1 in 4 women in their lifetime.

Cervical cancer screenings every three to five years could prevent 4 out of every 5 cases of invasive cancer.

In honor of Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month, patients can receive $5 off a Pap test or HPV Vaccine at any PPIL health center. Coupons will be accessible on the PPIL website, www.ppil.org, starting Monday, August 31 and are valid through September 30.

As Illinois’ most trusted provider of reproductive health care services, nearly 70,000 clients annually depend on PPIL for quality, affordable health care.


Planned Parenthood of Illinois (PPIL) provides affordably priced high-quality reproductive health care services to women and families throughout Illinois. Through health care services, educational programs and advocacy efforts, PPIL works to ensure and protect the reproductive rights of each individual. For more information, visit www.ppil.org.


Planned Parenthood of Illinois


Beth Kanter
312.592.6829 (office)
773.551.7044 (cell)


August 27, 2009