What causes cervical cancer?
We still have much to learn about cervical cancer. Medical professionals understand how the cancer develops and progresses but not the exact mechanism by which it is triggered. However, we do know that the human papilloma virus (HPV) plays a part in the appearance of cervical cancer. HPV is extremely common, and its presence does not necessarily indicate that cancer will develop. However, when this cancer does develop, HPV almost always plays a role.
Can cervical cancer be treated?
Cervical cancer is highly treatable when it is caught early. Only after it progresses does treatment become somewhat less effective. More than 90% of women with cervical cancer diagnosed in the initial stages survive treatment. Once the cancer progresses to other parts of the body, however, that number drops down to around 50%.
It is possible to treat cervical cancer, but the outcome depends heavily upon the stage at which it is discovered. That is one of the reasons why regular cancer screenings are vital.
Cervical cancer symptoms
Most patients experience no warning signs when they first develop cervical cancer. It is not until the disease has progressed that symptoms begin to show. Some of the most common cervical cancer symptoms include:
- Vaginal bleeding
- Bloody, watery discharge
- Pelvic pain
- Pain during intercourse
When it is related to cervical cancer, vaginal bleeding generally occurs between periods, after intercourse or after menopause. Bloody, watery discharge might have a foul odor, be heavy, and can occur at any time. Pain during intercourse and pelvic pain are other common symptoms of cervical cancer.
If you have experienced any of these symptoms or any other changes which concern you, reach out to your doctor and schedule an appointment. Your physician will be able to conduct a thorough exam and give you more information.
The first step to preventing cervical cancer is receiving regular cervical cancer screenings. We know these screenings can seem unpleasant, but the professional community health workers at Community Access Network make exams as comfortable and dignified as possible. We offer a variety of compassionate women’s health services. Whether you are starting a family, require gynecological healthcare or need a cancer screening, we are equipped to guide and assist you.
To learn more about how Community Access Network can help you stay healthy, reach out to us today. Call our clinic at 434-818-7880 or drop by and visit in person. Our team of community health workers is ready to help.