Unfortunately there aren’t obvious early symptoms of cervical cancer so women are often unaware that they have this type of cancer until it becomes too late. The symptoms appear when the cancer is already spread on the surrounding tissue and in this stage, it is already too serious. That is why woman should do Pap test regularly as it is very important for discovering early stage of cervical and ovarian cancer. The Pap test can detect abnormal cells in the cervix and then they are monitored and treated.
These symptoms can be linked with early stage of cervical cancer:
- Irregular Bleeding
A very common symptom of cervical cancer is irregular vaginal bleeding which can happen between periods or after intercourse. It can appear as bloody spots along with blood-streaked discharge. Heavy menstrual periods can be also a sign especially if they last longer than usual. Also, a vaginal bleeding in post-menopause period can be a serious warning that there is something wrong.
These several types of vaginal discharge can be linked with cervical cancer:
- Tinged with blood
- Pelvic Pain
Unusual pain during sex can be an early sign of cervical cancer as it is linked with abnormal cell changes. Cervical cancer can spread to lymph nodes in the pelvis as well.
Signs of Advanced Stages of Cervical Cancer
The early signs, mentioned above cannot be recognized by many women. The symptoms below on the other hand, are linked with advanced stage of cervical cancer.
- Back or pelvic pain
- Difficulty going to the bathroom due to obstruction
- Weight loss
- Swelling in one or both of the legs
What Puts You at Risk?
It is very important to notice the early signs of cervical cancer so you can prevent it from spreading and becoming dangerous. Below you can read which factors can put you at higher risk of cervical cancer:
- Having sex for the first time at a young age
- Many sexual partners
- Intercourse with a man whose previous partner had cervical cancer
- Mother’s use of diethylstilbestrol (DES) during pregnancy
- Weak immune system
The American Cancer Society warns women that the above symptoms can be linked with other medical conditions like various infections which can cause pain and bleeding. But just to be sure, visit a doctor as soon as possible because even if you have some kind of infection, it needs to be treated as well. Our body sends us different signs when something is wrong, so we must try not to ignore them. Pap test should be done regularly, at least once a year.
The video below will provide you with more information on cervical cancer: