How common is cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer was once the most common cause of cancer death among American women. Now, it is not even the most common form of cancer among women. Breast cancer is first. Then ovarian cancer. The death rate for cervical cancer has declined by nearly 75% since pap smear testing was introduced a half-century ago. Many pre-cancerous forms never develop into invasive cancer. And thanks to the regular pap screening and better treatments, survival rates for cervical cancer in its early, most-curable stages are constantly increasing. According to the ACS, all women with pre-invasive cervical cancer can now be cured with appropriate treatment. Still, about 10,000 to 13,000 cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed in the US each year. As many as 4,000 of these women will die from it. According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), the five-year survival rate -- even when the cancer is still confined to the cervix -- is only about 90%. And the overall (all stages combined) five-year survival rate is only about 70%. Before this sounds too scary: keep in mind that five-year rates are based on people diagnosed more than five years ago. Many advances have happened in the past five years. Interestingly, cervical cancer is most common among Hispanic women. It is twice as common in Hispanics as non-Hispanic white women. African-American women are 50% more likely to develop cervical cancer than non-Hispanic white women.