Definition of cervical cancer: Cancer that forms in tissues of the cervix (the organ connecting the uterus and vagina). It is usually a slow-growing cancer that may not have symptoms but can be found with regular Pap tests (a procedure in which cells are scraped from the cervix and looked at under a microscope). Cervical cancer is almost always caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) infection.
Estimated new cases of cervical (uterine cervix) cancer in the United States in 2016: 12,990
Incidence rates in Hispanic women and American Indian/Alaska Native women are higher than in women from other racial/ethnic groups. Cervical cancer incidence rates also vary with socioeconomic status and geographic location and cervical cancer screening rates vary across racial/ethnic, socioeconomic, and geographic groups.
Researchers have identified certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) that are transmitted through sexual contact as the cause of essentially all cervical cancers. Cervical cancer is preventable and curable if detected early. Important strategies to reduce cervical cancer deaths include screeningwith the Papanicolaou (Pap) test or with both the Pap test and a DNA test for HPV (cotesting). Another strategy is use of the HPV vaccine, which prevents infection with the HPV types that cause most cervical cancers. Standard treatment options for cervical cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.
The following stages are used for cervical cancer:
Carcinoma In Situ (Stage 0)
Stage I is divided into stages IA and IB, based on the amount of cancer that is found.
- Stage IA is divided into stages IA1 and IA2, based on the size of the tumor.
- In stage IA1, the cancer is not more than 3 millimeters deep and not more than 7 millimeters wide.
- In stage IA2, the cancer is more than 3 but not more than 5 millimeters deep, and not more than 7 millimeters wide.
- Stage IB is divided into stages IB1 and IB2, based on the size of the tumor.
- In stage IB1:
- In stage IB2, the cancer can be seen without a microscope and is more than 4 centimeters.
Stage II is divided into stages IIA and IIB, based on how far the cancer has spread.
- Stage IIA: Cancer has spread beyond the cervix to the upper two thirds of the vagina but not to tissues around the uterus. Stage IIA is divided into stages IIA1 and IIA2, based on the size of the tumor.
- Stage IIB: Cancer has spread beyond the cervix to the tissues around the uterus.
- Stage IIIA cervical cancer. Cancer has spread to the lower third of the vagina but not to the pelvic wall.
- Stage IIIB cervical cancer. Cancer has spread to the pelvic wall; and/or the tumor has become large enough to block the ureters (the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder). The drawing shows the ureter on the right blocked by the cancer. This blockage can cause the kidney to enlarge or stop working.
Stage IV is divided into stages IVA and IVB, based on where the cancer has spread.
- Stage IVA cervical cancer. Cancer has spread to nearby organs, such as the bladder or rectum.
- Stage IVB cervical cancer. Cancer has spread to parts of the body away from the cervix, such as the liver, intestines, lungs, or bones.
All information was taken from the NCI (National Cancer Institute)