Symptoms of cervical cancer
Cervical cancer is when cells of the cervix grow out of control and can no longer perform their normal functions. Cancerous cell can spread in the body. They travel through the body in the blood and lymphatic fluid. They can also spread directly to the next tissue closer to the cervix. Treatment is more successful if the cancerous cells hasn’t spread throughout the whole body. A pap smear can be used to diagnosed cancer of the cervix.
Who is at risk of cervical cancer ?
You are at risk if you fall into the following category.
- women age 35 to 50
- women with sexually transmitted viral infection such as genital warts
- started having sex before 18 years of age
- have many sexual partners
What are the symptoms of cervical cancer ?
Early stages of this cancer may be asymptomatic. However as it progresses , you may experience the following symptoms .
- abnormal bleeding , spotting or discharge from the vagina between periods, after intercourse or during menopause
- watery or bloody discharge from the vagina. It could be heavy and have a foul smell
- in advance cancers, there may be pain, swelling in the legs as well as problems urinating
These symptoms may be an indication of other health problems as well . The only way to be sure is to seek medical help immediately.
Treatment depends on the size of the cancer as well as how far it has spread. Treatment options include :
- Dilation and curettage which involves gently scraping your uterine lining. This is to find out if it has spread to the uterus
- radical hysterectomy – This is surgical removal of the uterus (including the cervix),the upper vagina, surrounding tissue, lymph nodes, and the fallopian tubes. The ovaries may be left intact for younger women
- radiation therapy and chemotherapy
Cervical cancer. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/index.htm. Accessed January 29, 2016
Signs and symptoms of cervical cancer. American Cancer Association. http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/moreinformation/cervicalcancerpreventionandearlydetection/cervical-cancer-prevention-and-early-detection-cervical-cancer-signs-and-symptoms. Accessed January 29, 2016