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Cervical Cancer

General Statistics

Leading Cause of Death

  • In Illinois, among the leading causes of cancer deaths in women, cervical cancer is number 14 out of 18
  • In Illinois, cervical cancer incidence and mortality rates are highest in Black and Hispanic women and lowest in White women

New Diagnoses (Incidence)

  • In the United States, the incidence of cervical cancer has decreased from 8.0 per 100,000 in 2008 to 7.5 per 100,000 in 2017
  • In Illinois, the incidence of cervical cancer has decreased from 9.7 per 100,000 in 2008 to 7.3 per 100,000 in 2017
  • In 2017, there were a total of 12,831 new cervical cancer cases in the United States and a total of 514 new cervical cancer cases in Illinois

Deaths (Mortality)

  • In the United States, mortality from cervical cancer has decreased from 2.4 per 100,000 in 2008 to 2.2 per 100,000 in 2017
  • In Illinois, mortality from cervical cancer has decreased from 2.8 per 100,000 in 2008 to 2.1 per 100,000 in 2017
  • In 2017, there were a total of 4,207 deaths from cervical cancer in the United States and a total of 157 deaths from cervical cancer in Illinois

Risk Factors

The primary risk factor for cervical cancer is having an HPV infection. HPV is a common virus that can be passed from one person to another during sex. Many strains of HPV exist, and most strains are not associated with cervical cancer. Other factors that increase risk of cervical cancer include:

  • Having other sexually transmitted infections such as HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis
  • Having a weakened immune system
  • Tobacco smoking
  • Using birth control pills for five or more years
  • Having given birth to three or more children
  • Having many sexual partners
  • Women whose mothers took the drug diethylstilbestrol (DES) while pregnant with them in the 1950s

Prevention and Early Detection

Screening for cervical cancer is recommended for women ages 21 to 65 years. Two screening tests are available:

  • The Pap test or Pap smear looks for precancers, which are cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated
  • The HPV test looks for HPV that can cause cell changes, and it can be used alone or at the same time as the Pap test

The HPV vaccine protects against HPV and may reduce the risk of HPV-related cancers, including cervical cancer. The CDC recommends HPV vaccination for children at age 11 or 12, but it can be started at age 9. It is also recommended for everyone through age 26, if not previously vaccinated.

Lifestyle factors that can lower a person’s risk for cervical cancer include:

  • Using condoms during sex
  • Limiting the number of sexual partners
  • Not smoking

Cervical Cancer Measures for Illinois

Cancer Measure Baseline (per 100,000) (2017) Target (per 100,000) (2025)

Incidence rate

7.3 6.0

Mortality rate

2.1 1.7

Cervical Cancer Incidence and Mortality by Race and Ethnicity in Illinois (2017)

Race/Ethnicity Incidence (per 100,000) Mortality (per 100,000)

All Races (includes Hispanic)

7.3 2.1

White (includes Hispanic)

7.2 1.9

Black (includes Hispanic)

9.7 3.7

Hispanic (any race)

8.6 2.4

Non-Hispanic White

7.0 1.9

Non-Hispanic Black

9.8 3.8

Asian/Other Races

3.8 Data not available

Other Races

Data not available Data not available
Race/Ethnicity Incidence (per 100,000) Mortality (per 100,000)

Hispanic

8.7 2.4

Asian/Pacific Islander

4.1 Data not available

American Indian/Alaskan Native

Data not available Data not available

Cervical Cancer – 20 Counties with Highest Incidence in Illinois (2013-2017)

Overall State Incidence

7.7

County Incidence (per 100,000)

Henry

14.5

Macoupin

12.4

Vermilion

12.1

Rock Island

11.1

Tazewell

10.3

Peoria

9.8

Macon

9.7

St. Clair

9.7

Winnebago

8.5

Cook

8.3

Kankakee

7.8

LaSalle

7.6

Sangamon

7.3

Madison

7.1

DeKalb

6.6

Will

6.4

Kane

6.2

McLean

6.0

Lake

5.9

Champaign

5.4