Cervical Cancer

Shaiyana Brown Block 2 December 5, 2014

What is cervical cancer?

Cervical Cancer is the third most common type of cancer in women, but is less common for women in the United States because of the use of Pap Smears. The cancer starts in the cervix . It begins as precancerous condition called dysplasia and takes years to develop into cervical cancer.

How is it caused?

The cause of cervical cancer is HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) and is transmitted through sexual intercourse. The disease is carried by men; however, men are not affected. Some risk factors of cervical cancer may include:

  • Not getting HPV vaccine
  • Weakened immune system
  • Sex at an early age
  • Multiple sex partners
  • Women whose mothers took the DES drug during pregnancy in 1960
  • smoking


Test are needed to diagnose cervical cancer because it is not visible to the naked eye.

  • Pap Smear- sample of cell scrapings taken for microscopic study
  • Colonoscopy- used under certain conditions, tissues removed and sent to the lab for examination
  • Staging- health care provider will order test to determine how far the cancer has spread


There may be no symptoms until the cancer has advanced and spread. The cancer can spread to the bladder, intestines, lungs, and liver.


  • May be no symptoms


  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Periods that are heavier and last longer

Advanced Cancer

  • Fatigue
  • Leaking of urine or feces from vagina
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pelvic pain


Treatment for cervical cancer depends on

  • Stage of cancer
  • Size and shape of tumor
  • Women age and general health
  • Desire to have children in the future

Treatment for early stage in the cancer removes and destroys precancerous tissue allows you to have a child in the future.

Examples include:

  • Laser therapy - uses light to burn abnormal tissue
  • Cryothearapy- freezes abnormal cells
  • Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure- uses electricity to remove tissue

Treatment for advanced cervical cancer usually does not allow the women to have children after treatment

Examples include:

  • Radical hysterectomy- removes uterus, lymph nodes, and upper vagina
  • Pelvic exenteranation- all organs of pelvis are removed
  • Radiation- used to treat cancer that has spread beyond cervix or has returned


May be completely cured with the proper treatment. The expectancy for women who had the cancer and it has only spread inside the cervix walls is 5 years. The 5 year rate drops as cancer spreads


"10 Scary Cervical Cancer Facts." Health24. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Dec. 2014.

N.p., n.d. Web.