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Women's Cancer

Some of the different types of cancer in women are as below:

  • Breast Cancer: Breast Cancer is the most common type of cancer found in women. It begins in the breast and the cancerous cells spread to the other parts of the body. If this cancer is detected early, it can be cured or treated but if it has spread to the other parts of the body, it can be life threatening. The stage of the cancer has to be detected to decide the best treatment to undergo. Often, there are no symptoms of breast cancer in the early stages but as the cancer grows it may show the following symptoms of a change in the shape or size of the breast, a lump in the breast, nipple inversion or nipple discharge. The types of breast cancer are Invasive and non invasive.
  • Cervical Cancer: This type of cancer in women begins in the cervix which is the part of the uterus that opens to the vagina. Cervical Cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the world. Human Papillomavirus is what causes the cervical cancer mostly. This virus is transmitted sexually and sometimes the immune system of the woman’s body destroys the virus leading to normal state of the cervix. But sometimes the virus infection remains and leads to cancer. The Pap test and the HPV test should be done when recommended and should not be ignored. Treatments of cervical cancer can be systemic or local.

There are 2 main types of cervical cancer.

  • Squamous cell carcinoma is cancer of cells that line the outer part of the cervix. These cancers have flat, thin cells. They cover the surface of the endocervix, which is the part closest to the uterus. About 80% of cervical cancers are this type.
  • Adenocarcinoma is cancer of the cells lining the inner part of the cervix. They develop from gland cells in the endocervix, which is the part closest to the vagina. About 20% of cervical cancers are this type.

If the cervical cancer affects both types of cells, it is called mixed carcinoma

The local treatments destroy or control the cancer cells in one area using radiation or surgery. Systemic treatments destroy or control the cells throughout the body using chemotherapy.

  • Ovarian Cancer: Ovarian Cancer in women causes bloating, abdominal pain, pelvic pain, difficulty in eating or urinary symptoms. It can also cause constipation, fatigue and pain in the body. A pelvic examination and pelvic ultrasound needs to be done to get tested for ovarian cancer. Surgery or chemotherapy is used for treatment of this cancer.
  • Vaginal Cancer: Vaginal Cancer in women starts in the vagina usually in the lining of the vagina and takes many years to develop. Pap tests help to detect vaginal cancers. The symptoms of vaginal cancer may be vaginal bleeding after lovemaking, pain while passing urine, pain during sexual lovemaking, constipation or abnormal discharge.
  • Vulvar Cancer: Vulvar cancer in women starts in the vulva which is the outer part of the reproductive system in females. This is not a very common type of cancer and can be cured if detected early.
  • Uterine Sacoma: This is the cancer that develops in the tissues of the uterus. The main types of uterine sarcoma are uterine leiomyosarcoma, uterine carcinosacoma, uterine adenosarcoma and endometrial sarcoma.

These are some of the conditions of cancer in women. It is required for women to undergo some tests like the Pap test and mammogram regularly to detect cancer early and to avoid cancer.

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