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What are the causes of vulvar cancer? Am I at risk?


 - What are the causes of vulvar cancer? Am I at risk?
Who gets vulvar cancer? 

Vulvar cancer is rare at any age, but the risk increases with age. More than 75 percent of cases are diagnosed win women over 65.
The pre-cancerous conditions, VIN (Vulvar Intraepithelial Neoplasia) and VAIN (Vaginal Intraepithelial Neoplasia) are often diagnosed earlier, generally in women who are between 30 and 50. Early stage vulvar cancer can affect younger women, too, but it is extremely rare. 

What are the causes of vulvar cancer?

Around 40 percent of cases of vulvar cancer are believed to be connected to HPV, the same virus that is responsible for the vast majorit of cervical cancer. (Around 80 percent of people in the UK will have HPV at some point over the course of their lives.)

Having VIN and/or VAIN also increases your risk of vulvar cancer, though only around 4% of women with VIN actually develop cancer.
There are other factors that are believed to your increase your chances of vulvar cancer, including having a weakened immune system, genital herpes, smoking and certain chronic skin conditions.


Samantha Fields
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