January 2018 • Volume 11, No. 1
From the Editor
Cervical Health Awareness Month - Get regular Pap tests.January is Cervical Health Awareness Month. It’s a chance to raise awareness about how women can protect themselves from HPV (human papillomavirus) and cervical cancer. HPV is a very common infection that spreads through sexual activity, and it causes almost all cases
of cervical cancer.
About 79 million Americans currently have HPV. Many people with HPV don’t know they are infected. And each year, more than 11,000 women in the United States get cervical cancer.

The good news?

  • The HPV vaccine (shots) can prevent HPV.
  • Cervical cancer screenings can help detect abnormal (changed) cells early, before they turn into cancer. Most deaths from cervical cancer could be prevented by regular screenings and follow-up care.

In this issue you’ll find resources about cervical health and surgeries, along with an all-new crossword puzzle about cervical and uterine anatomy and surgery.

Our student in the spotlight is Kristin Hill, APRN, MSN, FNP-C, BSN, BA, of Waco, TX.

And scroll down for jobs and NIFA’s favorite links.



Julie Lancaster, Editor


“Spermbots” Could Help Treat Cervical Cancer
Scientists in Dresdan, Germany, are experimenting with “spermbots,” sperm cells coupled with a synthetic component, to carry anticancer drugs to targeted tumors. Since sperm are “fine-tuned for swimming through the inhospitable environment of the female reproductive tract,” writes Kristie Nybo, Ph.D., the German team “began to wonder if spermbots might provide the ideal means of precisely targeted drug delivery for gynecological cancers.” Read more…

Endometriosis May Share Molecular Features with Gynecological Cancers
A new study done by researchers from Taiwan shows that patients with endometriosis have higher blood levels of a molecule that is linked to gynecological cancers than patients without endometriosis.
“The findings suggest that endometriosis may result from mechanisms that boost cell growth, supporting the idea that the condition shares certain features with cancer,” writes Magdalena Kegel of Endometriosis News. Read more…

Wider Racial Gap Found in Cervical Cancer Deaths
“The death rate from cervical cancer in the United States is considerably higher than previously estimated,” writes Jan Hoffman in The New York Times, “and the disparity in death rates between black women and white women is significantly wider, according to a study published . . . in the journal Cancer.

“The rate at which black American women are dying from the disease is comparable to that of women in many poor developing nations, researchers reported. What makes the findings especially disturbing, said experts not involved in the research, is that when screening guidelines and follow-up monitoring are pursued, cervical cancer is largely preventable.” Read more…

Cervical Cancer Surgeries

Check out this page on WebMD for a summary of treatments used for cervical cancer. In addition to radiation, chemotherapy, and a combination of the two (chemoradiation), a variety of surgeries are used. Depending on the location and extent of the cancer, certain surgeries used in the very early stages of cervical cancer may preserve a woman’s ability to have children, while surgery for most cases of cervical cancer does not preserve the woman’s ability to have children. Read

Student Spotlight: Kristin Hill

Credentials:  APRN, MSN, FNP-C, BSN, BA

Student Status:  Current student

City & State: Waco, TX
Current Position: I work at Advent Healthcare in Waco Texas for Dr. Brent Bauer and Dr. Lance Ellis, Orthopaedic trauma surgeons. They sent me to NIFA’s program.

When and where did you get your RN and FNP degrees? Baylor University RN in 1992; Baylor University FNP in 2015.

How did you come to choose perioperative nursing and how long have you been in the perioperative setting? I really just got this job in orthopedic trauma surgery due to a contact with my neighbor, who was the practice manager with the surgical group.

What is the scariest moment you’ve seen at the table? For me, being brand new (1 year) to surgery the scariest part (believe it or not) has been learning positioning, prepping, and draping for proper exposure. Femur day @ SSW was awesome. ?

What is one technique or RNFA trick you learned at the NIFA workshop that you will use for life? The slider knot and perfecting burying the knot for subcuticular sutures.

How do you feel having your RNFA will impact your life/career? Give me/my surgical group ability to bill. Give me much better skills. Increased confidence. Great class!

Cervical Health Crossword Puzzle

Test your knowledge of cervical health with this month’s all-new crossword puzzle.

When you’re ready to check your answers, follow this link to see how well you did. Good luck!

Jobs Front

Click here for the RNFA job postings we’ve collected for you this month.

NIFA – Office Hours

Monday-Friday 8:00am – 4:00pm

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this newsletter are strictly those of their respective authors and do not necessarily represent the views of NIFA. NIFA does not give any express or implied warranty as to the accuracy of statements made by our contributors and does not accept any liability for error or omission. It is the responsibility of all perioperative personnel to work within and adhere to their facility bylaws and individual scope of practice.