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Building on basics

Special delivery

First came the surprise of the pregnancy test, and the surge of emotions that followed: Another baby? Now? Are we ready? But a follow-up visit to the doctor brought a surprise that made the earlier roller coaster of emotions pale by comparison. Pregnancy, yes, but something else, too: Cancer. Cervical cancer.

"I had no idea I had cancer before they told me at my first prenatal visit," says Renita Hampton of Sacramento. Hampton, 28, a mother of four, couldn't believe her ears when she got a phone call from the health clinic that she had just visited for prenatal care. A Pap smear followed by a colposcopy revealed a small tumor in her cervix. She was three months' pregnant.

A similar whirlwind landed at the doorstep of Celia Lopez. First diagnosed with cervical cancer, the Stockton resident was considering her treatment options when, a few months later, she learned she was pregnant.

"I was on the pill. I was in shock," says Lopez, 45, who has four sons, three of them adults. "I never expected to have another baby at my age."


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Message to Editor
Supporting Cancer Center
UC Davis Cancer CenterUC Davis Health System

Pregnant women facing cervical cancer need expert care.