Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that develops in a woman’s cervix (the entrance to the womb from the vagina). Most women diagnosed with precancerous changes in the cervix are in their 20s and 30s, but the average age of women when they are diagnosed with cervical cancer is the mid 50s. It isn’t clear what causes cervical cancer, but it’s certain that HPV plays a role. Forms of HPV, a virus whose different types cause skin warts, genital warts, and other abnormal skin disorders, have been shown to lead to many of the changes in cervical cells that may eventually lead to cancer. Certain types of HPV have also been linked to cancers involving the vulva, vagina, penis, anus, tongue, and tonsils. Genetic material that comes from certain forms of HPV (high-risk subtypes) has been found in cervical tissues that show cancerous or precancerous changes.
It is done as part of a regular exam. During the procedure, cells from the surface of the cervix are collected and examined for abnormalities.
It is a procedure similar to a pelvic exam. It is usually used for a patient who had an abnormal Pap smear result. The examination uses a type of microscope called a colposcope to inspect the cervix. The entire area of the cervix is stained with a harmless dye or acetic acidto make abnormal cells easier to see. These areas are then biopsied. The colposcope magnifies the cervix by eight to 15 (depends on the colposcope) times, allowing easier identification of any abnormal-appearing tissue that may need biopsy.
Such as Computed tomography (CT), Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), Positron emission tomography (PET scan)
The carcinoma is confined to the surface layer (cells lining) of the cervix. Also called carcinoma in situ (CIS).
The carcinoma has grown deeper into the cervix, but has not spread beyond it (extension to the corpus would be disregarded).
Cervical carcinoma invades beyond the uterus, but not to the pelvic wall or to the lower third of the vagina.
The tumour extends to the pelvic wall and/or involves lower third of the vagina and/or causes hydronephrosis or non-functioning kidney.
The carcinoma has extended beyond the true pelvis or has involved (biopsy proven) the mucosa of the bladder or rectum. A bullous oedema, as such, does not permit a case to be allotted to Stage IV.
Early-stage cervical cancer is typically treated with surgery to remove the uterus (hysterectomy). A hysterectomy can cure early-stage cervical cancer and prevent recurrence. But removing the uterus makes it impossible to become pregnant. Surgery that preserves the possibility of becoming pregnant also may be an option, if you have very early-stage cervical cancer without lymph node involvement.
Radiation therapy uses high-powered energy beams, such as X-rays, to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy may be used alone or with chemotherapy before surgery to shrink a tumor or after surgery to kill any remaining cancer cells.
Chemotherapy uses medications, usually injected into a vein, to kill cancer cells. Low doses of chemotherapy are often combined with radiation therapy, since chemotherapy may enhance the effects of the radiation. Higher doses of chemotherapy are used to control advanced cervical cancer that may not be curable.