Every year, more than 12,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Cervical cancer develops in the cells of the cervix — the neck-shaped structure that connects the uterus and the vagina.
If you or a loved one has cervical cancer, or abnormal vaginal bleeding or pelvic pain, schedule a consultation at St. Joseph's Cancer Institute. Our expert oncologists and nurse navigators provide advanced care and treatment for cervical cancer in Stockton, CA and the surrounding areas. Find a Doctor to receive the services you need.
Cervical Cancer Causes & Risk Factors
In almost all cases, cervical cancer is caused by an earlier infection with HPV (human papillomavirus). Fortunately, vaccines for HPV make cervical cancer a highly preventable disease. Not all women with an HPV infection will develop cervical cancer.
Risk factors for cervical cancer include:
- Suppressed immune system (due to HIV or immunosuppressive drugs)
- Smoking (doubles your risk of developing cervical cancer)
- Multiple full-term pregnancies (three or more)
- Using birth control pills for a long period of time
- Being overweight
- A diet low in fruits and vegetables
- First full-term pregnancy before age 17 (risk is twice that of women who waited until age 25)
- Family history of cervical cancer
Speak with a doctor at Dignity Health about ways to lower your risk factors for cervical cancer.
Types of Cervical Cancer
The most common type of cervical cancer is squamous cell carcinoma. About nine out of 10 cervical cancers are this type. The second most common type of cervical cancer is adenocarcinoma. It develops in the cells in the glands of the cervix closest to the uterus. The third type of cervical cancer is mixed carcinoma and is much less common.
Cervical Cancer Symptoms
At Dignity Health, our gynecologists can perform Pap tests to catch most cervical cancers before they become more advanced.
If cervical cancer has progressed, you may notice the following symptoms:
- Unusual vaginal discharge
- Pelvic pain
- Pain with sexual intercourse
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding (after sex, after menopause, between periods, or periods that are longer or heavier than usual)
Because these symptoms can occur with many other gynecologic conditions, it’s important to consult your doctor for the right diagnosis.
Cervical Cancer Treatment at Dignity Health
Using the latest technologies, our experienced, skilled oncologists offer a complete range of treatment options for cervical cancer. Your treatment will depend on the stage of your cancer, but may include the following:
Oncologists at St. Joseph's Cancer Instituteprovide expert diagnosis and treatment for cervical cancer in Stockton, CA and the surrounding areas.