Gynaecological cancer

4 September 2017

There are five gynaecological cancers: womb, ovarian, cervical, vaginal and vulval.

They present clinically in many ways and manifest differently at different stages of the illness.

Awareness levels of these cancers are very low.

 

WOMB CANCER

Also known as uterine or endometrial cancer. 

Most common symptom is abnormal bleeding from the vagina.

It is diagnosed using transvaginal ultrasound and biopsy.

Treatment normally involves a hysterectomy, removing the womb and normally the ovaries and fallopian tubes too. Radiotherapy and chemotherapy are sometimes used too.

 

OVARIAN CANCER

A cancerous growth in the ovary of fallopian tubes.

Most common symptoms include increased abdominal size, persistent bloating and pelvic/abdominal pain, difficulty eating and feeling full quickly, or feeling nauseous.

It is diagnosed by a physical examination, including blood test, ultrasound and internal examination and biopsy.

Treatment normally includes surgery, removing the ovaries, fallopian tubes and maybe even the womb.

 

CERVICAL CANCER

Cancer of the cervix, the neck of the womb.

There are no obvious symptoms, which is why it is important to have regular screening. 

If you notice unusual bleeding, pain and discomfort during sex and an unpleasant vaginal discharge, get this checked out.

The gynaecologist will diagnose this depending on the results of your screening, they may also have to carry out a colposcopy and biopsy.

Treatment depends on how far the cancer has spread, but options include surgery and radiotherapy.

 

VULVAL CANCER

A rarer cancer affecting the vulva, the woman's external genitals including the labia, clitoris and Bartholin's glands.

Symptoms include a lasting itch, pain or soreness, thickened, raised, red, white or dark patches on the skin of the vulva, a visible open sore or growth, a mole that changes shape or colour, a lump or swelling.

It will be diagnoses after an examination and biopsy.

Treatment can vary, but the main options are surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

 

VAGINAL CANCER

Another rare cancer that originates in the vagina.

It is rare to have symptoms, but watch out for bleeding between periods, after the menopause or after sex. Odorous vaginal discharge that may be blood stained. Painful intercourse. Lumps or growths, and persistent itching.

Diagnosis will include blood tests, internal and external examinations, a coloscopy and a biopsy.

Treatment will depends on where the cancer is, but will possibly include radiotherapy, surgery and chemotherapy.

For more information on all the gynaecological cancers see www.eveappeal.org.uk

 

 

 

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Cancer Support Mallorca is a charity registered in Spain under number G57773749.