About Cervical Cancer
Cervical cancer is a cancer that arises in the cervix of the womb (uterus).Cervix is a hollow cylinder that connects the lower part of a woman’s uterus to her vagina. Most cervical cancers begin in cells on the surface of the cervix.Cervical cancer is often detected from a screening test called the Pap smear.Most cases of cervical cancer are linked to a virus called HPV (human papillomavirus).
Cervical Cancer Causes and Risk fFactors
Birth control ills (oral contraceptives)
Sexual history: Certain types of sexual behavior are considered risk factors for cervical cancer and HPV infection, including early onset of sexual activity (beginning in the early teen years), sex with multiple partners, and sex with someone who has had multiple partners.
HPV(human papillomavirus): Most cervical cancer cases are caused by the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV).
Cervical Cancer Symptoms
Early Warning Signs of Cervical Cancer
- vaginal bleeding such as in between periods, after sex, or after menopause
- unusual vaginal bleeding, such as in between periods, after sex, or after menopause
- pain in the pelvis
- increase the frequency of urination
- pain during urination
Advanced Signs of Cervical Cancer:
- abdominal pain
- Back pain
- Leg cramps or swelling
- Leakage of urine or feces from the vagina
- sever weakness
Diagnosis of Cervical Cancer
A pap smear is a test use to diagnose cervical cancer. In this test doctor collects a sample of cells from the surface of your cervix. Depending on age and risk doctor may also suggest an additional test for infection of human papillomavirus (HPV), because prior infection with high-risk types of HPV has been linked to high risk of cervical cancer.
A doctor examines the vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries and rectum for things like nodules or bumps.
A doctor uses a special microscope, called a colposcope, to examine the cervix. A colposcope is a large magnifying glass that a doctor uses to closely look at the skin-like covering of the cervix.
Two types of biopsies used to diagnose cervical cancer are the cone biopsy/LEEP and the sentinel lymph node biopsy:
Cone biopsy: A cone biopsy is a small operation to remove a cone shaped piece of tissue from your cervix.When Pap test and colposcopy results indicate cervical carcinoma, your doctor may perform a cone biopsy.
Sentinel lymph node biopsy: In this biopsy doctor remove the nearest lymph nodes where cancer present.
CT Scan (computed tomography scan)
A computed tomography (CT) scan is an imaging test that uses a computer to put a series of x-ray images together to create detailed 3D images of organs, tissues, bones and blood vessels in the body.
MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
A magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is an imaging test that uses powerful magnetic forces, radiofrequency (RF) waves and a computer to make detailed 3-dimensional pictures of the organs, bones and tissues inside your body.
Pet CT Scan is merely the procedure of scanning a human body by a radioactive ray to detect any specific part of a body where the cells are more active than normal. It has been seen that pet CT scan is mostly used to detect cancer in a patient’s body in most of the cases. Apart from that, the use of Pet CT Scan has also increased a lot in several other types of treatments as it helps the doctors understand the size,shape and precise location of tumor.
Cervical Cancer Treatments
1)Trachelectomy: Trachelectomy procedure, which removes the cervix and some surrounding tissue.
2)Hysterectomy :cervical cancers are treated with removing the cervix, uterus, part of the vagina and nearby lymph nodes.
Radiation therapy also called radiotherapy.Radiation therapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses beams of intense energy to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.Radiation therapy most often uses X-rays, but protons or other types of energy also can be used.
Radiation therapy is often used along with chemotherapy.At high doses, radiation therapy kills cancer cells or slows their growth by damaging their DNA. Cancer cells whose DNA is damaged beyond repair stop dividing or die. When the damaged cells die, they are broken down and removed by the body.
it often causes side effects. These are different for each person. Some common side effects are fatigue, dry mouth,nausea, vomiting, pain, and hair loss.
Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells. In general, normal cells grow and die in a controlled way. Cancer cells keep growing without control. It stopping them from spreading, or slowing their growth.
Chemotherapy is often used along with radiation therapy and surgery in treating cancers. It may be used before surgery to shrink a tumor or after surgery to destroy any cancer cells that remain and to prevent the cancer from coming back. Chemotherapy may also be used to relieve symptoms, improve quality of life and extend life for people with advanced cancer.
Chemotherapy drugs kill cancer cells, but they can also damage healthy cells.Some common side effects are fatigue, nausea, vomiting, pain, and hair loss.
It is designed to stimulate the body’s defenses to attack and kill cancer cells. Immunotherapy is a type of biological theraphy ( Biological therapy is a type of treatment that uses substances made from living organisms to treat cancer) and it helps your immune system fight cancer.
Targeted therapy blocks the growth of cancer cells by interfering with specific targeted molecules needed for carcinogenesis and tumor growth.