When a woman detects cancer in the reproductive organs, it is known as gynecologic cancer. There are five kinds of gynecologic cancer and these are – cervical, uterine, ovarian, vulvar and vaginal cancer. Amongst these different types of cancer, there is a screening test for cervical cancer only that can detect it at an early stage when the treatment is most effective. You may visit Gynae Clinic in London and consult with the experts to know if you are suffering from cancer.
In this type, the cancerous cells form in the tissues of the lower, narrow part of uterus and the cervix. Like other gynecologic cancers, this type of cancer has a screening test known as Pap smear in which the doctor collects a sample of cells from cervix. He may also test DNA to know about human papillomavirus (HPV) that contributes to cervical cancer.
Symptoms include – unusual discharge, back or pelvic pain, vaginal bleeding, bleeding after having intercourse. They may not be visible before the disease reaches advanced stage. Women who enjoy sex with many partners, have HPV, weakened immune system, had sexual intercourse at a young age or smoke cigarettes are at a higher risk of suffering from this disease.
The endometrium is actually the lining of uterus which is usually shed during menstrual cycle. Symptoms of uterine or endometrial cancer include – unusual discharge or bleeding, pelvic pain, painful urination or pain at the time of intercourse. Women who are flabby, have diabetes, family record of lynch syndrome, take estrogen or tamoxifen for breast cancer are at higher risk of developing this cancer.
Ovarian cancer may occur in the tissue of ovaries that produce female hormones and eggs. This may lead to more deaths than gynecologic cancer. When a woman develops any symptom of ovarian cancer like abdominal swelling and pain, feeling full when you eat, it is advised to see your gynecologist. Though there is no effective screening test for pelvic exams or ovarian cancer during which the gynae can examine the reproductive organs of women, they can diagnose the ailment when it is combined together with blood tests, CT scan, biopsy or ultrasound. Common symptoms include – family record of breast cancer, pancreatic cancer or melanoma.
Two kinds of vaginal cancer are squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. While the former spreads slowly near vagina and move to liver, bones and lungs, the latter forms in glandular cells that line vagina and spread to lymph nodes and lungs. Women who suffer from unusual discharge, abnormal bleeding, constipation, sudden pain in pelvic area, severe pain during urination or intercourse or lump in the vagina should talk to their gynae expert at a gynaecology clinic. She may perform a Pap smear, biopsy, pelvic exam and other tests to detect cancer.
Vulvar cancer occurs in the external genitalia and outer vaginal lips. One major risk factor for this cancer is vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia (VIN) where abnormal cells appear slowly on vulvar skin. Other risk factors include – HPV or history of genital warts. Women may experience itching, abnormal bleeding, lumps or growths, tenderness or color changes.
The treatment depends on knowing the signs and symptoms early by getting evaluated by the oncologists who have done specialization in gynecologic cancers. Visit a Gynae Clinic London to discuss with the experts and know if you need to undergo any kind of therapy.