Cervical cancer is a cancer arising from the cervix. It is due to the abnormal growth of cells that have the ability to invade or spread to other parts of the body. Early on, typically no symptoms are seen. Later symptoms may include abnormal vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain, or pain during sexual intercourse. While bleeding after sex may not be serious, it may also indicate the presence of cervical cancer.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection appears to be involved in the development of more than 90% of cases; most people who have had HPV infections, however, do not develop cervical cancer. Other risk factors include smoking, a weak immune system, birth control pills, starting sex at a young age, and having many sexual partners, but these are less important. Cervical cancer typically develops from precancerous changes over 10 to 20 years. About 90% of cervical cancer cases are squamous cell carcinomas, 10% are adenocarcinoma, and a small number are other types. Diagnosis is typically by cervical screening followed by a biopsy. Medical imaging is then done to determine whether or not the cancer has spread.
HPV vaccines protect against between two and seven high-risk strains of this family of viruses and may prevent up to 90% of cervical cancers. As a risk of cancer still exists, guidelines recommend continuing regular Pap smears. Other methods of prevention include: having few or no sexual partners and the use of condoms. Cervical cancer screening using the Pap smear or acetic acid can identify precancerous changes which when treated can prevent the development of cancer. Treatment of cervical cancer may consist of some combination of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy. Five year survival rates in the United States are 68%.Outcomes, however, depend very much on how early the cancer is detected.
Worldwide, cervical cancer is both the fourth-most common cause of cancer and the fourth-most common cause of death from cancer in women. In 2012, an estimated 528,000 cases of cervical cancer occurred, with 266,000 deaths. This is about 8% of the total cases and total deaths from cancer. About 70% of cervical cancers occur indeveloping countries. In low-income countries, it is the most common cause of cancer death. In developed countries, the widespread use of cervical screening programs has dramatically reduced rates of cervical cancer. In medical research, the most famous cell lineknown as HeLa was developed from cervical cancer cells of a woman named Henrietta Lacks.
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http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v105/n5/full/bjc2011301a.html british journal of cancertrends in breast, ovarian and cervical cancer incidence in mumbai, india over a 30-year period, 1976–2005: an age–period–cohort analysis by p k dhillon et al, british journal of cancer (2011) 105, 723–730. Doi:10.1038/bjc.2011.301