CERVICAL cancer can be spotted early from the results of a smear test but thousands of women are putting themselves at risk by not attending regular appointments, experts warn. The symptoms of cervical cancer are not always obvious, and it may not use symptoms until the advanced stages of the disease.
cervical cancer is a type of cancer that develops in a woman’s cervix, which is the entrance to the womb from the vagina. The majority of cases are caused by HPV – the human papillomavirus – which can be spread through sex. Every year in the UK, over 3,000 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer and 300,000 women will suffer cervical abnormalities. Figures revealed by Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust found almost a quarter of a million women aged 25 to 29 did not attend their smear test in England last year. Abnormal bleeding-Unusual vaginal bleeding is the symptom most strongly linked to cervical cancer, says Joshua Cohen, MD, a gynecologic oncologist at UCLA. “This could be bleeding after intercourse or between periods,” he says. Pelvic pain Along with abnormal bleeding, Strange discharge A cloudy, foul-smelling discharge is also a potential red flag, Anderson says. “[The discharge] could also be watery,” he adds. Of course, there are many causes of abnormal vaginal discharge that have nothing to do with cancer. Fatigue – Changes to bowel movements Peeing often or feeling like you always have to go are symptoms associated with the disease, Cohen says. So are persistent changes in the quality of your poop. You smoke (or used to smoke) Yes, this is a risk factor, not a symptom.