Cervical cancer occurs in the cervix cells, the lower part of the uterus joined to the vagina. Several strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV), an infection that is transmitted sexually, play a critical role in triggering cervical cancer. The body’s immune system fights back the virus from doing any damage when it gets exposed to HPV. However, in a few people, the virus stays alive for years, which leads to the changes that cause cervical cells to convert into cancer cells. You can minimize your chances of cervical cancer by ensuring screening tests in a cervical cancer hospital in Mumbai and getting a vaccine that prevents HPV infection.
A person may feel no signs in the early phases of cervical cancer, but females should consult their doctors and have regular Pap tests or cervical smear tests. A Pap test is precautionary as its purpose is not to discover cancer but to expose any cell fluctuations that point toward the possibility of cancer.
The most usual signs of cervical cancer are:
- Pelvic pain
- Bloodstains during vaginal discharge
- Bleeding after sexual intercourse
- Strong odor during vaginal discharge
- Bleeding occurrence in post-menopausal women
- Uneasiness during intercourse
- Bleeding between periods
These warning signs can have other reasons together with infection, and those who experience these indications should consult a doctor in a cervical cancer hospital in Mumbai.
The development of abnormal cells and uncontrolled division leads to cancer. A majority of cells in our body have a defined lifetime, and when they expire, the body replaces them with new cells.
There are two problems with abnormal cells:
- They continue to divide
- They do not die
As a result, cells accumulate in a large number over a period that turns into a tumor or lump.
However, the risk of cervical cancer increases with some risk factors, these include:
- HPV: This is a virus that gets transmitted sexually. There are more than 100 types of HPV that can occur, and at least 13 of them may lead to cervical cancer.
- Having several sexual companions or becoming sexually active early: Having sexual contact with someone who has HPV can more certainly lead to the spread of cancer-causing HPV. The risk of developing cervical cancer/HPV infection also increases if women indulge in sexual activities with many sexual partners.
- Smoking: Smoking also increases the chances of cervical cancer.
- Weak immune system: People with AIDS or HIV, and people who have gone through a transplant, leading to the use of immunosuppressant medications, have a higher risk of cervical cancer
- Birth control pills: The use of contraceptive pills for a long- period also increases the risk of cervical cancer.
- Other sexually transmitted diseases: Gonorrhea, Syphilis, and Chlamydia increase the risk of cervical cancer.
Types of cervical cancer
Your diagnosis and treatment are dependent on the type of cervical cancer you may have. Mainly, there are two types of cervical cancer:
Squamous cell carcinoma: Most cervical cancers, ranging between 80% to 90%, are squamous cell carcinomas. It begins in the cells on the outer surface covering the cervix.
Adenocarcinoma: It accounts for 10% to 20% of cervical cancers. This type of cancer starts first in the gland cells that line the birth canal in the lower region of the cervix.
Cervical Cancer Stages
It is critical to identify the cancer stage as this determines the type of treatment. Assessing the situation is important to know how far the virus has spread and whether it has started affecting other organs. If you notice any warning signs in you, immediately look for a cervical cancer hospital in Mumbai, and consult a medic.
Stage 0: Presence of pre-cancerous cells.
Stage 1: Deeper tissues of the cervix are affected due to growth in cancer cells, and perhaps into the uterus as well as nearby lymph nodes
Stage 2: The cancer cells have grown beyond the uterus and cervix in this stage, but the lower part of the vagina or pelvis wall is still safe. Lymph nodes are at the risk of getting affected in stage 2.
Stage 3: Possibilities are that cancer cells are obstructing the ureters, the tubes that transmit urine from your bladder, due to the presence of cancer cells on the walls of the pelvis or the lower vagina. Nearby lymph nodes might still be safe in this stage.
Stage 4: The rectum or the bladder gets affected in this stage. Cancer cells start rising out of the pelvis. Later in this stage, it starts spreading to distant organs, including the lungs, liver, bones, and lymph nodes.
Seeking medical attention and undergoing screening is critical if any symptoms occur. The doctor at a specialized cervical cancer hospital in Mumbai can start the treatment as soon as he diagnoses the cancer stage and increases the chance of survival.
To minimize your chances of cervical cancer, you must take all preventive measures. If there are any warning signs you observe, then you must soon find a good cervical cancer hospital in Mumbai, such as Nanavati Max Hospital.
Consult your doctor for the HPV vaccine: Check with the doctor whether an HPV vaccine is suitable for you, as a timely vaccine reduces the possibility of HPV-related cancers and cervical cancer.
Have routine Pap tests: Doctors usually recommend Pap tests starting at 21 years of age and then repeating the test every few years. These tests can discover the condition of the cervix.
Exercise safe sex: Lower your possibility of cervical cancer by taking preventive measures, such as using precautions of using condoms and restricting the number of sexual partners you may have.
Do not smoke: Smoking we all know is bad for health, and it also increases the risk of cervical cancer. So, if you are a smoker, consult with your medic about ways to assist you to quit smoking.
It is a summary of cervical cancer causes, symptoms, types, stages, and preventive measures.