Cervical Cancer

Cervical Cancer


The lower portion of the uterus that is connected to the vagina is called the cervix. When cancer affects this part, it is termed cervical cancer. The human papilloma virus, HPV in short, is a major cause of cervical cancer. Normally the defence mechanism of the body will protect the body from HPV, but in some cases, HPV causes the cells of the cervix to change into cancer cells.

Signs and Symptoms

Symptomless when it begins, advanced cases might manifest the following symptoms:

  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Blood after intercourse
  • Blood from the vagina in-between periods/after menopause
  • Vaginal discharge that has blood and a bad odour

Causes and Risk Factors

  • HPV is in most cases responsible for cervical cancer
  • Bad lifestyle choices play a role as well
  • Having many sexual partners
  • Becoming sexually active very early
  • Having other sexually transmitted diseases
  • A weak immune mechanism
  • Smoking plays a huge role


  • Kidney failure
  • Formation of blood clots
  • Pain
  • Bleeding/discharge from the vagina


  • The doctor will conduct a cervical examination with a colposcope and may take samples for further analysis.
  • If cancer is confirmed, the stage the cancer is at will have to be determined. For this, x-ray, CT scan, MRI and PET scan may be needed.


When the cancer is in the beginning stages, surgery is recommended. Surgical options include removing the affected portion of the cervix, total removal of the cervix or removing the uterus and the cervix. The extent of spread will decide which surgery is best.

Other treatment options include chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy and palliative care.


  • HPV vaccines are available. Patients can discuss with their doctors and get vaccinated.
  • Undergoing regular screening tests like pap smear.
  • Practicing safe sex.
  • Not smoking

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