Health & Fitness

Know These 7 Signs Of Cervical Cancer


One of the most common cancers that affect women is cervical cancer and if it’s not detected early and treated it can be life-threatening.

Although cervical or cervix cancer can be deadly it’s preventable and can be treated if detected early. Cervical cancer is most commonly caused by HPV or the human papillomavirus, and it’s highly contagious. The virus is sexually transmitted (sexually transmitted infection) and comes in many types but only some cause cervical cancer.

Sometimes an HPV infection might go without treatment or cause abnormal cell growth which may lead to cervical cancer. The signs of cervical cancer may not be obvious like that of breast cancer but here are some things you should look out for;

1. Unusual discharge

If you notice watery discharge or your discharge suddenly changed, contact your doctor. When cancer starts growing inside the cervix, the cells of the uterine wall begin to rid, thereby producing a watery discharge.


2. Warts

If you notice small warts whether internally or externally it might be a sign. According to gynecologist Rosa Maria Leme, “The appearance of small warts (externally or internally) serve as a red flag…diseases such as HPV, which can greatly increase the chances of cervical cancer in women.”

3. Pain or bleeding

Besides your menstrual period, any other bleeding you experience shouldn’t be ignored. When cervical cancer grows on the walls of the cervix, it can dry out and even crack thereby causing discomfort and bleeding.

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4. Anaemia

If you suddenly start feeling tired than normal or your heart rate increases after doing normal exercises this might be a symptom of anaemia. And one of the causes of anaemia is abnormal bleeding which follows cervical cancer.

5. Urinary problems

If you are unable to completely empty your bladder it will be uncomfortable and may lead to urinary tract infection. This is because when the cervix swells, the bladder and the kidneys may be compressed, blocking the passage of urine in the process.

6. Continuous pain in the legs, hips or back

When the cervix is swollen it will compress the internal organs and the blood vessels may also be compressed in the process. If this happens, the blood flow to the pelvis and legs may be blocked causing pains in the legs and ankles.

7. Weight loss

When the cervix is swollen, it can compress the stomach allowing you to be able to eat only a small amount of food. Meaning, you’ll lose appetite and may lose weight.

Meanwhile, it might be worthwhile to note that not all of these symptoms are signs of cervical cancer. But if you notice any of these signs you might want to contact your doctor just to be safe.

Factors that increases the risk of developing HPV include

  • Smoking or breathing in smoke and fumes
  • Having more than one sexual partners
  • Having sex without protection
  • Low immunity

STI is the most common cause of cervical cancer which is why being aware of the risk factors and symptoms of HPV is very important for every woman.

For prevention, a pap smear test can be done every year to help detect cervical cancer early on and treat it before it’s too late.

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Common Childhood Cancers And Treatment Options  


The body is made up of cells that are vital to life. When some of these cells grow out of control, they become abnormal.

The body process for growth of new cells involves replacing old cells with new ones but sometimes the process goes wrong and then new cells are formed even when the body does not need demand the old cell refuses to die.

These extra cells can form a tumour, which is either benign or malignant. Malignant tend to be cancerous because they invade surrounding tissues while benign tumours are not cancerous. There are over 200 different types of cancer. Cancer that occurs in adult varies largely from those that occur in children. The commonest types of cancer that affect children are


  1. Leukemia
  2. Brain and spinal cord tumors
  3. Neuroblastoma
  4. Lymphoma (including both Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin)
  5. Rhabdomyosarcoma
  6. Retinoblastoma
  7. Bone cancer (including osteosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma)
  8. Wilms tumor

Leukaemia

Leukaemia is cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow. It accounts for 30% of all the cases of cancer affecting children. Acute lymphocytic leukaemia (ALL) and acute myelogenous leukaemia (AML) are the commonest types of Leukaemia found in children. Children with this disease often suffer weakness, bone and joint pain, fatigue, bleeding, fever, weight loss etc.  As soon as acute leukaemia is detected, it needs to be treated quickly because it grows fast.

Brain and Spinal cord tumours

Most brain tumours in children occur in the lower parts of the brain causing blurred vision headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and seizures, finding it hard to handle objects and walk properly. Spinal cord tumours are not as common as brain tumours. Brain and Spinal cord tumours account for 26% of childhood cancer. It is second to Luekaemia in its prevalent among children.  There are different types of brain tumours that demand different treatment.

Neuroblastoma

Neuroblastoma develops in infants and young children less than 10 years old. Usually, it grows from some nerve cells in the foetus.  This can occur in any part of the body but it usually starts in the belly as a swelling, which causes bone pain and fever.  It accounts for about 6% of childhood cancers.

Wilms Tumour

Wilms tumour also is known as nephroblastoma affects the kidney. It is common among kids between 3 to 4 years old. It can present as a lump or swelling around the abdomen. Some of the symptoms are fever, pain, nausea, or poor appetite. Wilms tumour accounts for about 5% of childhood cancers.

Lymphomas

Lymphomas affects the immune system cells known as lymphocytes. It also affects the bone marrow and other organs of the body. There are two main types of lymphoma -Hodgkin lymphoma (Hodgkin disease) and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Some of the symptoms of lymphomas are weight loss, fever, sweats, tiredness, and swollen lymph nodes under the skin.

Rhabdomyosarcoma

This type of cancer affects the cells responsible for the growth of skeletal muscles. It can start in any part of the body. It presents with swellings and pain at the part affected.

Retinoblastoma

Retinoblastoma is the type of cancer that affects the eye. It usually occurs in children around the age of two, and it is rarely found in children older than 6. The child’s eye is unusual in the sense that when you shine a torch on the pupil it turns white instead of red.

Bone Cancers

This type of cancer affects the bones. It often occurs in teens and older kids but it can start at any age.  The two main types of bone cancer found in children are Osteosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma.

Treatment of Childhood Cancers

The treatment for cancer depends on the type of cancer involved and how advanced it is. These treatments include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, stem cell transplants and targeted therapy.

Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy refers to drugs that kill actively growing cancerous cells. Cancer cells grow rapidly without heeding the normal signals of the body that control the growth of cells.

Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy, also known as targeted therapy or biotherapy. It is a cancer treatment that invigorates a patient’s immune system so it is equipped to fight disease. This is done in partnership with other cancer treatments.

Radiation Therapy: Radiation is a form of X-rays that is used to create images of areas of the body that cannot be easily seen. Cancer treatment requires higher doses of radiation. It works by preventing and destroying the growth and reproduction of dividing cells

Bone marrow transplant: This involves the replacement of the faulty spongy tissue or stem cells  inside the bones.  These stem cells are the ones that develop into red blood cells, which helps to fight infections. This is used in the treatment of bone cancer.

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