“Cervical cancer is most frequently diagnosed in
women between the ages of 35 and 44
with the average age at diagnosis being 50”.1

Umbrella
What may the Cervical Cancer Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Cancer of the Cervix
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Cervix Cancer

Cancer

What is the cancer?

DotS the definition of cancer may vary. The (United States) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) definition is:

Cancer is a disease in which cells in the body grow out of control. Cancer is always named for the part of the body where it starts, even if it spreads to other body parts later. When cancer starts in the cervix, it is called cervical cancer”.2

Cervix

What is the cervix?

DotS the definition of the cervix may vary. The CDC’s definition:

“The cervix connects the vagina (birth canal) to the upper part of the uterus. The uterus (or womb) is where a baby grows when a woman is pregnant”.3

Definition

What is cervical cancer?

DotS the definition of cervical cancer may vary. The (United States) National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) definition is:

“Cervical cancer
Cancer that forms in tissues of the cervix (the organ connecting the uterus and vagina). It is usually a slow-growing cancer that may not have symptoms but can be found with regular Pap tests (a procedure in which cells are scraped from the cervix and looked at under a microscope). Cervical cancer is almost always caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) infection”.4

Signs and Symptoms

What are signs and symptoms of cervical cancer?

In Cervical Cancer: Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging: Signs and Symptoms of Cervical Cancer the American Cancer Society (ACS) explain:

“Women with early cervical cancers and pre-cancers usually have no symptoms. Symptoms often do not begin until the cancer becomes larger and grows into nearby tissue. When this happens, the most common symptoms are:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding, such as bleeding after vaginal sex, bleeding after menopause, bleeding and spotting between periods, or having (menstrual) periods that are longer or heavier than usual. Bleeding after douching may also occur
  • An unusual discharge from the vagina − the discharge may contain some blood and may occur between your periods or after menopause
  • Pain during sex
  • Pain in the pelvic region”.5

Cause

What is the main cause of cervical cancer?

In Gynecologic Cancers: Cervical Cancer — Basic Information About Cervical Cancer the CDC explain:

“All women are at risk for cervical cancer. It occurs most often in women over age 30. Long-lasting infection with certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) is the main cause of cervical cancer. HPV is a common virus that is passed from one person to another during sex. At least half of sexually active people will have HPV at some point in their lives, but few women will get cervical cancer”.6

In Cervical Cancer: What Causes Cervical Cancer? the (Australian) Jean Hailes for Women’s Health (JH) also note:

“Cervical cancer is almost always caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV).

HPV is a common sexually transmitted infection that affects the surface cells of the genital area including the cervix, vagina and vulva. It can also cause visible warts.

HPV is very common. It is estimated that around 80% of women will be exposed to the virus at some point in their lifetime. Many with HPV don’t know they’ve been exposed to the infection. While HPV is common, most women with the infection do not go on to develop cervical cancer. Only certain types of HPV cause cancer.

Cervical cancer usually occurs many years after the infection caused by the HPV virus”.

In Cervical Cancer: Risks and Causes the (United Kingdom) Cancer Research UK elaborate on risks and causes of cervical cancer.

Age

Is there an association between age and cervical cancer?

In Cervical Cancer: About Cervical Cancer – Key Statistics for Cervical Cancer the ACS note:

Cervical Cancer

“Cervical cancer is most frequently diagnosed in women between the ages of 35 and 44 with the average age at diagnosis being 50. It rarely develops in women younger than 20. Many older women do not realize that the risk of developing cervical cancer is still present as they age. More than 20% of cases of cervical cancer are found in women over 65. However, these cancers rarely occur in women who have been getting regular tests to screen for cervical cancer before they were 65”.8

Common or Not

How common is cervical cancer?

In Cervical Cancer: Overview the World Health Organization note:

“Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women. In 2018, an estimated 570 000 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide and about 311 000 women died from the disease”.9

Pap Tests

Can when to start, when to stop and how often to have regular Pap tests, vary?

Depending on You, DotS and/or Depending on Your Country’s cervical cancer screening program, when to start, when to stop and how often to have regular Pap tests, can vary. It may therefore be in your best interest to choose to check what’s-what for you in your country.

Early Detection

Is there an association between regular Pap tests and the early detection of cervical cancer?

Yes. In Cervical Cancer the ACS explain:

“Cervical cancer can often be found early, and sometimes even prevented, by having regular screening tests. If detected early, cervical cancer is one of the most successfully treatable cancers”.10

Cervical Cancer Is Not Just A Women’s Issue

Is cervical cancer just a women’s issue?

In Eliminating Cervical Cancer: Dispelling Common Misconceptions – Cervical Cancer Is Not Just A Women’s Issue the Union for International Cancer Control explain:

“Both men and women can be infected by HPV. As men are carriers of HPV, they have an important role in prevention, and an even more critical role in cultures and countries where they have strong influence in the decision-making around their partner’s health, including offering financial support and encouraging partners to get screened or seek treatment”.11

Health Care Provider

What if I think I have cervical cancer?

If you think you have cervical cancer, or you are concerned about anything down there, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this.

In Cervical Cancer: Symptoms & Causes – Symptoms: When To See A Doctor the (United States) Mayo Clinic note:

“Make an appointment with your doctor if you have any signs or symptoms that concern you”.12

Health Topics A-Z

Where may I find Health Topics related to Cervical Cancer?

In Health Topics A-Z you may find:

Links

Where may I find Links related to Cervical Cancer?

Your Country may have Links similar to:

Sources

Where may I find the Sources quoted?

You may find the Sources quoted at:

Sources

  1. Cervical Cancer: About Cervical Cancer – Key Statistics for Cervical Cancer. Last Revised: 12 January 2021. American Cancer Society https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/detailedguide/cervical-cancer-signs-symptoms Accessed: 12 December 2021
  2. Gynecologic Cancers: Basic Information About Cervical Cancer. Page Last Reviewed: 12 January 2021. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/basic_info/ Accessed: 12 December 2021
  3. Gynecologic Cancers: Basic Information About Cervical Cancer. Page Last Reviewed: 12 January 2021. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/basic_info/ Accessed: 12 December 2021
  4. NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms: C — Cervical Cancer. National Cancer Institute https://www.cancer.gov/publications/dictionaries/cancer-terms/expand/C Accessed: 12 December 2021
  5. Cervical Cancer: Early Detection, Diagnosis, and Staging: Signs and Symptoms of Cervical Cancer. Last Revised: 03 January 2020. American Cancer Society https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/detailedguide/cervical-cancer-signs-symptoms Accessed: 12 December 2021
  6. Gynecologic Cancers: Basic Information About Cervical Cancer. Page Last Reviewed: 12 January 2021. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/basic_info/ Accessed: 12 December 2021
  7. Cervical Cancer: What Causes Cervical Cancer? Last Updated: 14 October 2021 | Last Reviewed: 16 July 2021. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/vulva-vagina-ovaries-uterus/cervical-cancer Accessed: 12 December 2021
  8. Cervical Cancer: About Cervical Cancer – Key Statistics for Cervical Cancer. Last Revised: 12 January 2021. American Cancer Society https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/detailedguide/cervical-cancer-signs-symptoms Accessed: 12 December 2021
  9. Cervical Cancer: Overview. World Health Organization https://www.who.int/health-topics/cervical-cancer#tab=tab_1 Accessed: 12 December 2021
  10. Cervical Cancer. American Cancer Society https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervicalcancer/index Accessed: 12 December 2021
  11. Eliminating Cervical Cancer: Dispelling Common Misconceptions – Cervical Cancer Is Not Just A Women’s Issue. Union for International Cancer Control https://www.worldcancerday.org/Eliminate Accessed: 12 December 2021
  12. Cervical Cancer: Symptoms & Causes – Symptoms: When To See A Doctor. 17 June 2021. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cervical-cancer/symptoms-causes/syc-20352501 Accessed: 12 December 2021

Topic Last Updated: 15 January 2022 – Topic Last Reviewed: 12 December 2021
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