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Cervical Cancer: Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention

 

Cervical Cancer: Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention

Cervical cancer is characterized by the abnormal growth of cells on the cervix. If caught early enough, cervical cancer has a high remission rate; this disease is routinely caught with the help of a Pap test during a gynecological exam. The disease is most often the result of the human papillomavirus, which is passed through sexual contact.

Symptoms of cervical cancer

There are several symptoms that mark the presence of cervical cancer. Unusual pain during sex is a common sign that something is amiss. Irregular bleeding that falls out of the normal menstrual cycle or bleeding if something comes into contact with the cervix, such as with sexual intercourse, are other signs. Vaginal discharge that is tinged with blood is another common symptom.

Treatment for cervical cancer

Some of the treatments for this disease include chemotherapy, radiation therapy and a hysterectomy with removal of the pelvic lymph nodes; the hysterectomy might also include the removal of the ovaries and the fallopian tubes. Most of these treatments make it impossible to have children afterwards. Catching the cancer early usually results in less dramatic procedures.

Prevention of cervical cancer

There are a few ways to prevent cervical cancer. One is by getting an HPV shot; this vaccine protects against the two main types of HPV that cause cervical cancer. Another way is by having routine Pap tests done and getting treated immediately if an abnormal result comes up. Since HPV is spread through sexual contact, practicing safe sex and using condoms can also help prevent this disease.

Cervical cancer can have devastating effects if it is not caught and treated early, and the HPV vaccine is a wise precaution to take.

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