Understanding Cervical Cancer Essay

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Cervical cancer, also called cervical carcinoma, develops from abnormal cells on the surface of the cervix (McKesson Clinical...). The cervix connects the vagina and the uterus. During birth, the cervix dilates and allows a baby to pass from the womb to the birth canal (Hixson, 37). Sadly, cervical cancer used to be the common cause of cancer deaths in women, but fatalities greatly reduced since the development of the Pap smear in the 1930s (American Cancer...). Early diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer may increase the possibility of pregnancy.
Even though it is unknown why cancer happens in some people and not in others, heredity seems to have an effect in some forms of cancer. Because of this, family history may be
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The study found a risk for cervical cancer among women in a family. The study also indicated that women are at risk for cervical cancer at a younger age if their mother or a sister had the disease (Peterson). In its early stages, the presence of cervical cancer may not create any noticeable symptoms. As the cancer progresses, the woman may experience a watery vaginal discharge and painless bleeding. Over time, the bleeding becomes heavier and more frequent, and pain becomes noticeable in the lower abdomen or back. The best tool for diagnosing cervical cancer is the Pap smear. In this simple test, cells are removed from the cervical epithelium with a cotton swab or wooden scraper and examined under a microscope for precancerous cell changes and signs of malignancy (Peterson). If the Pap smear shows more significant abnormalities, the health care provider will want to look at the cervix with a colposcope (a special type of microscope that allows the provider to examine the vagina and cervix). The earlier cervical cancer is diagnosed and treated, the greater the chances are that the patient will survive (McKesson Clinical...). Surgery may be used to remove tissues showing precancerous changes and cancers in situ. Cryotherapy, which uses extreme cold to destroy tissues, and electrocoagulation, which uses heat to remove tissue, may also be used. Surgery, radiation, chemotherapy
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