Advanced Cervical Cancer
What is cancer of the cervix? What is a pre-cancerous lesion in cervical cancer?
Cervical cancer is the 4th most commonly reported cancer in women.
Cancer of the cervix or cervical cancer starts in the cells of the cervix. Cervix is the opening of the uterus (womb) which connects it with the vagina. It is the 4th most commonly reported cancer in women with approximately 5.7 million new cases reported in 2018. Persistent or chronic infection by human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most commonly reported cause of cervical cancer.
Cervical Cancer: Quick Facts
- Cervical cancer is well-studied & has an avoidable set of causes.
- In almost all reported cervical cancer cases, the main cause found is – long-lasting, chronic Human papilloma virus (HPV) infection
- Most sexually active women are exposed to HPV. But, it is not well understood why infection persists in only some.
- Cervical cancer progresses slowly - from pre-cancer to potentially fatal invasive cancer stage.
- The long gap between pre-cancer to cancer stage gives ample opportunity for screening, detection & treatment.
Most cervical cancers start from pre-cancerous lesions, which is an abnormal change in the cells of the cervix because of long and persistent HPV infection. With the help of screening tools such as a Pap test, pre-cancerous lesions can be quickly identified. Cervical cancer and pre-cancerous lesions can be classified based on how they look under the microscope. The most common types are squamous cell carcinoma (9 out of 10 cases) and adenocarcinoma. To know more on detection and screening of cervical cancer, click here.
AJCC: American Joint Committee on Cancer CC: Cervical cancer DES: Diethylstilbersterol DNA: Deoxyribonucleic acid FIGO: International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics HPV: human papillomavirus Pap test: Papanicolaou test TNM: Tumor, node, metastasis staging system VEGF: Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor
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