Cervical Cancer: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Prevention & Treatment

It is a rising concern in recent times as more and more women are getting most affected by cervix cancer. The cervix, or bottom section of the uterus, is where this form of cancer first appears. The successful management and treatment of cervical cancer heavily depend on early identification and prompt action. Comprehending the fundamentals of cervical cancer is vital for the overall health of any woman. We are going to examine the main features of cervical cancer in this outline provided by Queen’s Gynaecology, highlighting its importance and emphasising the need for early identification. 

Our goal at Queen’s Gynecology is to enable people to take charge of their physical and mental wellness by raising awareness. Let’s examine the key facts about cervical cancer, emphasising the value of early identification and easily available therapies.

What Is Cervical Cancer?

Your cervix’s surface is where cervical cancer, also known as cervix cancer, first appears. It occurs when precancerous cells emerge from cells located on your cervix. The lowest point of your uterus, where a baby develops during pregnancy, is called the cervix. It serves as a link between the uterus and the vaginal entrance. Tissues consisting of individual cells cover it. 

These are the cells that are healthy enough to develop into precancerous cells.

Cervical cancer can be prevented by administering the cervical cancer vaccine, and identifying cells that are precancerous and eliminating these before they transform, even though not all of these cells will eventually become cancerous. The human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted infection, is the primary cause of cervical malignancies. Chronic HPV infection can alter cervical cells over time and possibly result in cancer.

Cervical Cancer Causes

The virus known as human papillomavirus (HPV), an infection that can be transmitted sexually, is the main cause of persistent cervical cancer. This virus can gradually alter cervical cells, raising the possibility of developing cancer. While not every HPV infection results in cervical cancer, the risk is increased by ongoing infections.

There can be some other cervical cancer causes besides HPV. Smoking is an important issue because it subjects the cervix to toxic compounds present in tobacco and impairs immune function. 

Other risk factors include repeated childbirths, long-term use of contraceptive pills, and immune system weakness from diseases like HIV/AIDS. Another factor that may be relevant is the family’s past, as a hereditary predisposition to particular conditions may enhance vulnerability.

It is crucial to comprehend these different risk factors to put preventative actions and focused screenings into action. Although a vaccine for cervical cancer is an important preventative measure, frequent screenings and an integrated strategy for preventing cervix cancer are also important. Knowledge of other hazards facilitates early identification and successful management.

Symptoms Of Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer in its early stages is typically asymptomatic and difficult to diagnose. Symptoms of cervical cancer might appear gradually over a few years. The greatest approach to prevent cervical cancer is to find abnormal cells during checkups.

Stage 1 cervical cancer signs and indicators may include:

  • Discharge from the vagina which may be thick, watery, bloody, and smell bad.
  • Bleeding from the vagina after sexual activity, in between monthly cycles, or during menopause.
  • Menstrual cycles can be heavier and longer than usual.
  • The following symptoms might occur if cancer has migrated to adjacent tissues or organs:
  • Uncomfortable or difficult urinating, occasionally with blood in the pee.
  • Diarrhoea, as well as rectum discomfort or blood with bowel movements.
  • Exhaustion, loss of appetite, and weight reduction.
  • An overall sense of being unwell.
  • Leg swelling or a dull aching in your back.
  • Abdominal and pelvic discomfort.

Skilled gynaecologists are available to perform a Pap test and a thorough gynaecological examination at Queen’s Gynaecology if you have irregular bleeding, vaginal discharge, or any other unexplained symptoms of cervical cancer.

Diagnosing Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer diagnosis entails some critical steps intended to achieve precise and early detection. 

Approaches for Cervical Cancer Diagnostics:

  • Pap smear
    • A standard screening technique.
    • Involves obtaining cervical cell samples.
    • Finds anomalies or alterations that might be malignant.
  • HPV Test
    • Detects Human Papillomavirus high-risk strains.
    • Optimises Pap smear for a thorough evaluation of risk.
    • Positive outcomes might inspire more research.
  • Biopsy
    • Required to confirm the presence of malignant cells.
    • involves taking a little sample of tissue extracted from the cervix.
    • establishes how far cancer has spread.

Cervical cancer diagnosis must be made as early as possible and accurately. Together, the HPV test, the Pap smear and the biopsy help to quickly detect irregularities and malignant alterations. Early detection of cervical cancer improves the effectiveness of treatment and frequently permits less drastic measures.

Experts at Queen’s Gynaecology insist on how regular gynaecological check-ups are essential for women’s general health and well-being, as they play a critical role in preventing and diagnosing cervix cancer early, especially for high-risk people.

Treatments For Cervical Cancer

The stage that you are in of the illness, your physical condition, age, and whether or not you intend to have babies in the future are all variables that determine the recommended course of therapy for cervical cancer. 

  • Radiation
    • Energy beams are used in radiation treatment to destroy cancerous cells on the cervix. Two kinds of radiation therapy are:
      • External beam radiation treatment (EBRT) uses a machine outside of the body to target cancer with powerful radiation.
      • Radiation is applied inside or close to the malignancy during brachytherapy.
  • Chemotherapy
    • Chemotherapy, often known as “chemo,” involves chemicals either orally or by injection to destroy cancer cells. It is excellent at destroying cells wherever they reach your body and enters your bloodstream.
  • Surgery
    • Cervical cancer is treated with several surgical techniques. The following are a few of the most typical surgical procedures for cervical cancer:
      • Laser surgery: In this procedure, cancer cells are burned away using a laser beam.
      • Cryosurgery: The cancer cells are frozen during this surgery.
      • Cone biopsy: A conical-shaped tissue fragment is taken from your cervix during this procedure.
      • Simple hysterectomy: In this procedure, the uterus is removed, but the tissue around it is left in place. There is no removal of your pelvic and vaginal lymph nodes.
      • Radical hysterectomy: This involves dissecting the pelvic lymph nodes with the removal of the uterus, the parametrium (the surrounding tissue), your cervix, a tiny amount of your upper vagina, and your pelvic lymph nodes.
      • Trachelectomy: Your uterus is left intact, but your cervix and upper vagina are removed.
      • Similar to a radical hysterectomy, pelvic exenteration involves part of your colon, your vagina, your bladder, and your rectum, depending on where the cancer has progressed.

By excising the malignant tissue, the illness can be cured in its early stages. In other situations, your doctor could carry out a radical or straightforward hysterectomy.

A mix of therapies may be administered to certain individuals. Radiation treatment or chemo may be used by the physician for treating cancer that has returned or spread. Chemo and radiation may occasionally be used by your doctor before or following surgery.

  • Targeted therapy
    • Particular cancer cells are eliminated by targeted medication therapy without endangering cells that are healthy. It functions by going after proteins that regulate the growth and metastasis of cancer cells.
  • Immunotherapy
    • Through the use of medication, immunotherapy helps your body identify and eliminate cancer cells. By releasing a signal, cancerous cells may additionally evade your immune system’s onslaught. Immunotherapy aids in focusing on these signals to prevent cancer cells from deceiving your body into believing they are healthy cells.

Cervical Cancer Prevention

Cervix cancer is frequently associated with established indicators of risk for the illness. While certain risk factors are avoidable, others are not.

 Among the risk variables you can influence are:

  • Cervical cancer risk is higher in people who have not had frequent Pap testing.
  • Cervical cancer is associated with specific kinds of HPV. 
  • Having several sexual partners and engaging in sexual activity under the age of 18.
  • Cervical cancer risk is elevated in those who smoke cigarettes.
  • HIV-positive individuals are at a higher risk than the general population.
  • Prolonged usage of birth control pills.
  • Being pregnant three times or more to term. 
  • A compromised immune system renders your body incapable of combating illnesses.

Is It Possible To Avoid Cervical Cancer?

Cervical cancer can be prevented in certain ways. The most crucial measures in avoiding cervix cancer are having Pap tests and scheduling routine gynaecological checkups. 

Further actions you can take are:

  • Obtain the HPV vaccination or vaccine for cervical cancer, if you qualify.
  • When you have sex, use protection techniques like condoms.
  • Don’t have too many sexual partners.
  • Give up using tobacco products and smoking.


Knowing the reasons, identifying the symptoms, and being screened often are essential in the battle over cervical cancer. Queen’s Gynaecology provides modern diagnostic procedures such as HPV testing, biopsies, and Pap smears for rapid identification to promote proactive health measures. Frequent examinations and a cervical cancer vaccine as preventive measures enable people to take control of their health and provide prompt treatment in the event any problems develop. Queen’s Gynaecology strives to improve women’s general health and lifespan by promoting a culture of preventative care, highlighting the significance of regular tests for thorough gynaecological wellness.

Kashmera Hazra

Kashmera Hazra

Kashmera Hazra is an engineer turned writer. She is an alumnus of the prestigious university Birla institute of technology, Mesra, and has several international journals and research papers in her name. She worked as a content writer with HealthKart and has over six years of experience in this field.

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