Cervical Cancer Treatment

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Cervical or Cervix cancer is a cancerous cell growth in the cervix of a woman. Cervix is a narrow part at the lower side of the uterus and at the top of the vagina. The cervix is vital as it allows the development of birth canal that connects the lower uterus and the upper vagina and aids the fetus growth. Cancer of the cervix is a gradually growing cancer and years are required for the cells over the cervix region to grow abnormally and cause danger to the life or fertility.

This cancer is closely related to women's reproductive organs and may hamper the fertility or reproduction ability of a woman. Hence, cervical cancer treatment at the earliest is vital to save the life and the reproduction ability of the patient. The treatment options may involve surgery to remove a part or complete cervix, radiation therapy or chemotherapy. One or more treatment options may be combined together to address the problem in an effective manner.

Treatment and Management of the Cervical Cancer:

The cancer of the cervix is divided into multiple stages depending upon the level it has spread. Once the diagnosis has been done and it is confirmed that a patient has cervical cancer, then additional tests are done to detect the stage of the cancerous cell development. The treatment options are dependent upon the stage of the cancer. There are two main stages, non-invasive cancer and invasive cancer. Non invasive cancer is characterized as the malignancy growth at the outer layer of the cervix tissues, whereas, an invasive cancerous development is the abnormal cancerous cell growth in the deeper tissues of the cervix.

Following are the treatments available for the disease that offer the promising results and minimal loss possible:

Treatment for Non-Invasive Cervical Cancer:

For women, who are diagnosed with cervical cancer following a Pap test, at an early stage, following treatment options may be helpful to provide promising results and also no follow-ups may be required in certain cases.

  • Hysterectomy - This is a major surgery that is used for selective cases of non-invasive cancer of cervix. The surgery aims at removal of the abnormal malignancies as well as pre cancerous cells from the uterus and the cervix areas.
  • Cone Biopsy - This surgery may be a type of diagnostic examinations to confirm the disease. However, the mechanism remains the same and it includes the usage of a special surgical instrument, scalpel for the removal of the cervical tissues. However, a cone shaped large tissue is removed from the cervix for the diagnosis and during the treatment the cancerous growth is removed from the cervix region with the help of a scalpel.
  • Laser Surgery - This non-invasive surgery is effective in treating cervical cancer by killing the cancerous as well as pre cancerous cells through the use of beam of laser light directed to the affected area.
  • Cryosurgery - This is another non-invasive surgery that involves the freezing mechanism for killing the cancerous cells.
  • Loop Electrosurgical Excision Procedure (LEEP) - This surgery of cervical cancer also removes the cancerous cells from the cervix region. The mechanism involves the use of a lopping wire to allow the electrical current to pass through and remove the cancerous or pre cancerous cells from the affected area.
Treatment for Invasive Cervical Cancer:

In case, the early symptoms of the disease go unnoticed, then the disease advances to further level and the cancerous cell growth occurs in the deeper layers of the cervix or even reaches till the uterus or the bladder. To address the invasive cancer of the cervix, extensive treatment options will be required. Also, these treatments will depend upon the adaptability of the patient to the treatment, health conditions, and medical history. Following are some of the popular invasive treatments for cervical cancer:

  • Hysterectomy - Hysterectomy is a surgical treatment to manage the early stage of cervical cancer as well as an invasive type of cancer. This surgery can be of two types, simple and radical. Simple hysterectomy is the removal of the cancerous and pre cancerous cells from the affected cervix. Radical hysterectomy deals with a more invasive removal of a part of cervix, vagina, or uterus. A surgical removal of complete uterus through this surgery ends the possibility of a woman to become pregnant.
  • Radiation Therapy - This technique uses high-powered radiations to kill the cancerous cells and arrest their further growth. This may be given externally or internally, through a device filled with the radiation material directed at the cervix. This technique is best suitable for the advanced growth of the cancerous growth in the cervix tissues. The complications of the therapy may include nausea, vaginal contraction or even premature menopause for young women.
  • Chemotherapy - This technique uses anti-cancerous chemical injections to kill the cancerous cells in the body. The injections are injected in the veins of the patient that kills the fast growing cells of the body. This technique may be used in conjunction with radiation therapy as it complements it and contracts the cells before killing them. The doses of the chemicals are decided as per advancement of the cancer or the growth of the cells. The complications or side effects include diarrhea, nausea and hair loss.

Cancer of the cervix may be one of the devastating diseases if it is not diagnosed at an early stage. The symptoms may be silent or unnoticeable during the early stages of cervical cancer, hence, prompt examinations and accurate diagnosis is important to plan the treatment of the disease. Cervical cancer treatment is dependent upon various factors such as the health of the patient, recurrence of cervical cancer, growth of the cancerous cells and medical history of the patient. For the early stage of cancer, non-invasive treatments are suitable with less complications and follow ups. For advanced cancer of the cervix, invasive treatment techniques such as Hysterectomy, radiation therapy and surgery is vital.

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