Cervical cancer: What is it?
The lower portion of the uterus that attaches to the vagina, or the cervix, is where the cells of the cervical cancer develop.
The majority of cervical cancers are brought on by different strains of the sexually transmitted infection known as the human papillomavirus (HPV).
The body’s immune system normally stops the virus from causing harm when exposed to HPV. However, in a small number of people, the virus endures for years and aids in the process by which some cervical cells develop into cancer cells.
By getting screening tests and an anti-HPV vaccine, you can lower your risk of developing cervical cancer.
Early-stage cervical cancer usually has no symptoms or indicators.
More severe cervical cancer symptoms and signs include:
Vaginal bleeding following menstruation, in between periods, or following menopause
Vaginal discharge that is watery, red, and may be heavy and odorous
Pain in the pelvis or during sexual activity
Whenever to visit a doctor
If you experience any symptoms or signs that worry you, consult a doctor.
When healthy cervix-based cells experience DNA changes (mutations), the development of cervical cancer follows. The instructions that inform a cell what to do are encoded in its DNA.
Healthy cells develop and proliferate at a specific rate before dying at a specific period. The cells are instructed by the mutations to grow and replicate erratically while remaining alive. A mass (tumour) is created when aberrant cells start to assemble. Cancer cells can infect the tissues in the immediate area and can separate from a tumour to spread (metastasize) to other parts of the body.
Although the exact origin of cervical cancer is unknown, HPV is known to have a part. The majority of HPV-positive people do not go on to develop cancer. This indicates that in addition to genetics, your environment and lifestyle choices also have a role in determining whether you’ll get cervical cancer.
cervical cancer varieties
Your prognosis and course of therapy are influenced by the type of cervical cancer you have. The most prevalent forms of cervical cancer are:
1 Cancer of the squamous cell
The thin, flat cells (squamous cells) lining the outer portion of the cervix that extends into the vagina are where this particular type of cervical cancer develops. Squamous cell carcinomas make up the majority of cervical malignancies.
The glandular cells that line the cervical canal and have the shape of columns are where this type of cervical cancer develops.
cervical cancer risk elements include:
1 Several sexual partners
Your likelihood of contracting HPV increases with both the quantity of sexual partners you have and the quantity of partners your partner has.
2 An early sexual encounter.
Early adolescent sexual activity raises HPV risk.
3STIs and other sexually transmitted diseases
Your risk of developing HPV is increased if you have other STIs such chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis, or HIV/AIDS.
4 A lowered immunological response.
If you have HPV and your immune system is compromised by another medical issue, you may be more likely to develop cervical cancer.
The risk of squamous cell cervical cancer increases with smoking.
6 Exposure to a medicine designed to prevent miscarriages. If
You may be at a higher risk of developing clear cell adenocarcinoma, a specific type of cervical cancer if your mother used the medication diethylstilbestrol (DES) when she was pregnant in the 2000s.
To lessen your chance of developing cervical cancer:
1 Discuss the HPV vaccine with your doctor.
Getting vaccinated against HPV may lower your risk of developing cervical cancer and other malignancies linked to HPV. Consult your doctor to determine if you should receive the HPV vaccine.
2 Conduct regular Pap tests
Pap tests can identify cervix precancerous abnormalities, allowing for their monitoring or treatment to stop cervical cancer. The majority of medical organisations advise starting routine Pap tests at age 21 and having them repeated every few years.
3 Sex should be safe.
By taking steps to avoid STDs, such as using a condom each time you have sex and reducing the number of partners you have, you can lower your risk of developing cervical cancer.
4 Avoid smoking
Stop smoking if you don’t already. If you currently smoke, discuss quitting methods with your doctor.