Fwd: Pregnancy, childbirth are major women killers in PNG

Alan Bradley abradley1 at bigpond.com
Mon Feb 11 18:45:11 MST 2002

This is too short to be worth snipping...

>From the Post-Courier (http://www.postcourier.com.pg ):
 Tuesday 12th, February, 2002

Pregnancy, childbirth are major women killers in PNG

MAJORITY of women in Papua New Guinea still die from pregnancy and
delivery-related problems, says a gynaecologist from the Port Moresby
General hospital Dr Mathias Sapuri.
Dr Sapuri said this when asked to state the common causes of death among
women in the country.
He said the most common cause of death in women in PNG was still in
pregnancy and delivery-related complications.
"Over 470 women die out of 100,000 per year. Of that number the majority are
from rural areas,'' he said.
He said the health of the women had improved slightly in the recent years.
But the number was still alarming, considering the fact that the deaths
reflect the poor health services in the rural areas where the bulk of the
country's population is located.
"We think there is an improvement but it is very, very slow,'' he said.
He said most of these deaths were from rural areas where women did not have
access to antenatal clinics, did not deliver at a healthcare facility and
did not have access to family planning facility.
The second common causes of death among women, according to Dr Sapuri, is
the breast cancer, followed by cervical cancer then by ovarian cancer.
"Three commonest cancer associated with women deaths in PNG is breast
cancer,'' he said.
This was a disease that runs in families and is associated with higher level
of oestrogen (female hormone) exposer.
In PNG, he said, it was also found in more and more women that were
overweight. Other findings include women with less children.
He said 250 women die from breast cancer every year and encouraged women to
go early for screening for breast cancer and biopsy tests.
The Port Moresby General Hospital did not have a mammogram , but he said
those who could afford to go overseas could do so and get mammogram test
before it was too late.
The cervical cancer, which claims about 100 lives, can be detected early if
women go for pap smear test which can be done at private clinics as well as
the main hospitals including the Port Moresby General Hospital.
He said this disease was found mostly in women who had multiple partners or
women associated with men that had multiple partners.

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