The cervix is the lower tubular portion of the uterus in females. Cancer of the cervix has recently been included among the AIDS defining malignancies. Initially, the cells of the cervix become abnormal. This leads to a growth localized to the inner lining of the cervix. If left untreated, it spreads through the full thickness of the cervix and then to other organs.
Symptoms of cervical cancer
Initially, the patient does not experience any symptoms. In the late stages, the patient may have symptoms of abnormal vaginal bleeding and discharge.
Treatment of cervical cancer
Early detection of cervical cancer is possible with a test called Pap smear
. In this test, a swab of the cervix is taken and the cells examined under a microscope for any abnormality. Treatment depends on the stage of the cancer. Most cases are treated surgically. If the cancer has spread to other organs and surgery cannot result in cure, the patient is treated with chemotherapy. Anti HIV drugs are also administered to the patient.