Stages of Cervical Cancer
In its development, cervical cancer goes through four main stages, each of which is characterized by the appearance of some specific signs of manifestation. Treatment of the disease is also prescribed depending on the degree of its development.
Cancer of the cervix of the zero stage is said if diseases and processes preceding the degeneration of the cells of its mucosa into malignant are found in this organ. In this case, precancerous conditions include: leukoplakia, human papilloma, cervical erosion . Each of them provides a separate treatment.
Cervical cancer stage 1
The diagnosis of cervical cancer stage 1 means that the malignant tumor is located only in the surface epithelial layer of the mucous membrane of the organ, has a limited size and does not extend to nearby organs. The first stage of cervical cancer is divided into stages 1A and 1B. In the first case, it is a question of a tumor, the size of which does not exceed 5 millimeters, in the second case, a tumor reaching a size of 4 centimeters, but not affecting neighboring organs.
The survival rate of patients in the case of qualified treatment of the first stage of uterine cancer is almost 100%. As the main treatment, the removal of the affected part of the organ is prescribed, radiation therapy can be additionally performed.
In case of successful operation and in the absence of complications, the reproductive function of the woman’s body can be preserved.
It is important to remember that various precancerous conditions and the tumor itself may return in a few years, so every woman who is cured of an illness should undergo a regular physical examination.
Cervical Cancer Stage 2
Cancer of the cervix stage 2 means that the malignant tumor has already grown into the walls of the organ, but has not yet spread to neighboring systems of the body. It is also possible for it to grow into nearby lymph nodes, which is extremely unfavorable. With the blood flow, the malignant cells quickly spread throughout the body, therefore metastases (secondary tumors) can occur in organs distant from the main tumor.
At this stage of development of the disease, the woman is disturbed by unreasonable uterine bleeding, vaginal discharge, pain in the pubic area and abdomen, the period of menstruation is significantly delayed, it becomes painful.
Treatment can be carried out in one of three available ways:
- surgical removal of the affected organ along with the nearest lymph nodes. At the same time, the abdominal wall is examined for the presence of metastases in the organs located in the abdominal area. If necessary, abdominal lymph nodes may be removed;
- a course of radiation therapy, during which the cancer of the tumor and the organ itself is irradiated;
- chemotherapy, the introduction into the patient's body of large doses of special drugs that kill cancer cells (cisplatin).
Cervical Cancer Stage 3
Cervical cancer stage 3 involves the germination of the tumor deep into the uterus, as well as its spread to the inner wall of the pelvis, the vaginal area. As a result of the vigorous activity of the tumor, it is possible to stop the work of the kidneys, blockage of the ureters, which leads to the inevitable death of the organism.
The main symptoms of this stage of the disease can be identified: copious discharge from the vagina, swelling of the extremities, problems with emptying the bladder, intestines, constant weakness of the body, pain in the abdomen.
Treatment in this case depends on which organs are affected and by how much. Recommended removal of the uterus, lymph nodes. To stop the growth of distant tumors, chemotherapy, radiation and radiotherapy (with the introduction of small doses of a radioactive substance in the region of the diseased organ) are prescribed.
Cervical Cancer Stage 4
Cancer of the cervix stage 4 is said if the malignant tumor has spread not only to the reproductive organs, but also to the intestines, the nearest bones and the bladder.
The basis of treatment in this case is chemotherapy (a combination of various drugs). Removal of the organ itself is usually not carried out. This stage of cancer is usually considered incurable. However, the world's leading clinics (in particular, Israeli and German) offer treatment even for very heavy patients. This treatment is very expensive and can take several years.
Even a complete cure for cervical cancer cannot guarantee that the tumor will not return again. The percentage of recurrent disease is extremely high in patients who have undergone successful treatment. However, the ability to defeat cancer at the initial stage of its development is also very great.
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