Cervical cancer affects the uterus. The cervix is the narrow part of the lower part of the uterus, commonly called the cervix.
The American Cancer Society estimates that by the end of 2019, doctors will make 13,170 new diagnoses of cervical cancer in the United States. More than 4,200 women in the United States will die from cervical cancer this year.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) causes most cases of cervical cancer. The HPV vaccine successfully prevents HPV.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) originally recommended the vaccine for all ages 9 to 26. However, the CDC now recommends that the vaccine be available to all women and men ages 26 to 45 who were vaccinated as teenagers.
In this article, we will discuss cervical cancer, its symptoms, prevention and treatment.
Symptoms and initial symptoms
In the early stages of cervical cancer, a person may not have any symptoms.
As a result, women should have regular cervical smear tests, or Pap tests.
Pap tests are preventive. It is not intended to detect cancer, but rather to detect any cell changes that may indicate the development of cancer, so that a person can take steps to treat it early.
The most common symptoms of cervical cancer are:
Bleeding between periods
bleeding after intercourse
Bleeding in postmenopausal women
discomfort during intercourse
strong smelling vaginal discharge
bloody discharge from the vagina
These symptoms may have other causes, such as infection. Anyone experiencing any of these symptoms should see a doctor.
It is important to determine the stage of cancer, which helps a person choose the most effective type of treatment.
Staging is used to assess how far the cancer has spread and whether it has spread to nearby structures or distant organs.
The 4-stage system is the most common way to stage cervical cancer.
Stage 0: Precancerous cells are present.
Stage 1: Cancer cells have grown from the surface to deeper tissues of the cervix, possibly the uterus and nearby lymph nodes.
Stage 2: The cancer has spread beyond the cervix and uterus, but has not spread to the pelvic wall or lower part of the vagina. It may or may not affect nearby lymph nodes.
Stage 3: Cancer cells are in the lower part of the vagina or in the pelvic wall, which can block the urethra, or the tube that carries urine from the bladder. It may or may not affect nearby lymph nodes.
Stage 4: Cancer affects the bladder, rectum, and extends from the pelvis. It may or may not affect the lymph nodes. Then, in stage 4, it will spread to distant organs such as the liver, bones, lungs, and lymph nodes.
Getting tested and getting medical attention if you have any symptoms can help a person receive early treatment and increase their chances of survival.
Cancer is the result of uncontrolled division and growth of abnormal cells. Most of the cells in our body have a lifespan, and when they die, the body creates new cells to replace them.
Abnormal cells can have two problems:
they don’t die
they are divided
This results in an excessive accumulation of cells, which eventually forms a lump or tumor. Scientists do not fully understand why cells become cancerous.