Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers in women worldwide. Almost all cases are caused by a virus called human papilloma to virus (HPV). Sexually active women of all age groups are at risk of developing this cancer. One of the cunning things about this cancer is that it does not Show any symptoms in its early stages, but after the disease has spread to various organs like the liver, bladder, lungs and other organs, symptoms become more prominent.
There are lot of warning signs of cervical cancer you should not ignore, some of them can be caused by other pathologies aside cancer like Sexually transmitted infection, pelvic inflammatory disease and many more but as an adult woman if you notice any of these symptoms do well to consult your gynecologist for proper and immediate check up. Below are some few signs of it, such as;
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding an untimely bout of vaginal bleeding that occurs regularly could be an indicator of cervical cancer. This is because as cancer spreads to nearby tissues, it creates new, abnormal capillaries that break easily and causes bleeding. Such bleeding may happen between menstrual periods, after sexual intercourse, after menopause and even after a pelvic exam. It could also be due to other medical conditions like hormonal imbalance, pelvic inflammatory disease or infection in the pelvic organs
2 .Unusual vaginal discharge its normal to have a little bit of colourless, odourless,discharge but if this discharge increases in quantity, smells foul or has an irregular appearance it could be a sign of infection or cervical or endometrial cancer. If you experience this please consult a gynecologist immediately.
- Painful intercourse
This is another warning sign of cervical cancer that is seen in the advanced stage when the cancer has spread throughout the tissues and reproductive organs.
- Painful urination
This is one of the most obvious and prevalent symptoms of this deadly disease
- Loss of bladder control
Loss of control is a primary issue when suffering from cervical cancer. It typically indicates that the cancer has spread beyond a localized area and is affecting the bladder or other parts of the urinary tract. So they tend to have urinary incontinence coupled with blood in urine
- Heavier andlonger menstrual period
Irritation of the cervix possibly due to spread of cervical cancer can cause this problem. Heavy bleeding can be due to hormonal imbalance fibroid, polyps, pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis, or thyroid, liver or kidney disease. It can even happen due to certain medication
- Leg pain
Women diagnosed of cervical cancer often complain of swelling on their legs. When the cancer spreads it obstructs blood flow which causes swelling in the legs. This often creates a sore, painful sensation making it hard to carry out day to day activities. The pain tens to be constant and increases in Intensity over time. At times there also may be back pain?
- Pelvic pain
This usually does not occur unless the cancer is in a very advanced stage. It occurs at unusual times and may start suddenly without any trigger and last for a longer period of time.
- Unexplained weight loss
As seen in other types of cancer, unexplained weight loss can indicate cervical cancer. When suffering from cancer the immune system works hard to fight it. He body produces small proteins called cytokines which breaks down fat at a much higher rate than normal. This leads to weight loss irrespective of your diet.
- Constant fatigue
if you are feeling low or lack of energy despite resting it could be a cause for concern when suffering from cancer, healthy red blood cells are replace with white blood cells to fight off the disease. This causes anaemia leading to fatigue, lack of nerdy and loss of appetite. In addition there is decreased oxygen supply to the body.
- Women between 20 and 30 years old should get a screening every 3 years those 30 to 65 years old should be screened every 3 to 5 years.
- Get a HPV vaccination before your early twenties if possible
- Quit smoking and avoid second hand smoke
- Take the right steps to prevent STD