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12 February 2021

Ayhan Gül

Gynecologic Oncology Specialist

Cervical Cancer

Cervical Cancer

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The part of the uterus that can be evaluated during vaginal examination and extends towards the vagina is known as the cervix. Cancers arising from the tissue are seen at an average age of 48. Cervical cancer HPV (human papilloma virus- Human Papilloma Virus) is known to be the main cause.

 

  • What are the symptoms?
  • Early stage disease may be asymptomatic or there may be watery vaginal discharge, post-intercourse bleeding or spotting bleeding. In the advanced stage, symptoms may occur depending on the organs that the disease is affected. The most common symptom is abnormal vaginal bleeding. Progression from HPV infection to cancer takes a long time such as 10-20 years and with certain stepped lesions.

 

  • What are the diagnostic methods?
  • Lesions can be detected with regular smear and HPV scanning. The diagnosis of cervical cancer is made by pathological examination of the parts taken from this region. Afterwards, the stage of the disease is determined by using the necessary imaging methods such as clinical examination, MR, tomography, PET-CT and the appropriate treatment plan is created.

 

  • What are the treatment methods?
  • According to the prevalence of the disease in cervical cancer, surgery or radiation therapy is the first treatment option. Patients older than a certain stage are not operated on, but radiation therapy and drug therapy can be performed if necessary.
  • What is the importance of regular scans?
  • The causative agent of cervical cancer is HPV and the transformation into cancer takes place at different stages over the years. Therefore, the risk can be reduced by regular screening. In screening, smear and HPV tests are used by examining the swabs taken from the cervix. In recent years, the HPV test has come to the fore. Also, the recently developed HPV vaccine plays an important role on the protection against certain HPV types when applied before coming into contact with the virus.

 

  • How often should cervical cancer screening be done?
  • A smear test should be done every three years between the ages of 21-30 and an HPV test in every five years between the ages of 30-65. If HPV cannot be performed, a smear control should be performed every three years. The screening is terminated for women over the age of 65 and without any problems.

 

  • How to get a smear and HPV sample?
  • During the vaginal examination, the cervix becomes visible with the help of a speculum inserted into the vagina. A swab is taken from this part with a brush or spatula. During the examination of the swab, a slide is spread and fixed with chemical substances (conventional smear), or it is placed in special liquids (liquid-based smear) and pathologically examined. HPV test is also made from these samples. Taking both HPV and smear samples is an easy and painless procedure.

 

 

Op. Dr. Ayhan GÜL

Gynecological Oncology