Vulval Cancer

The vulva is the external portion of the female genital organs. Vulvar cancer is a rare disease that can occur on any part of the external organs, but most often affects the labia majora or labia minora.

What are the most common risk factors for uterine cancer?

Vulvar cancer is common over the age of 50. It can result from chronic Vulvar inflammation, infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV), lichen sclerosis, melanoma or atypical moles on non-Vulvar skin and Vulvar intraepithelial neoplasia (VIN). It is also common among smokers.

What are the symptoms of Vulvar cancer?

The symptoms may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Consult your physician for diagnosis. The following are the most common symptoms, constant itching or pain, changes in the color and the way the vulva looks, bleeding or discharge not related to menstruation

How can Vulvar cancer be prevented?

The cause of Vulvar cancer is not currently known, however, Suggestions for prevention include: Delay onset of sexual activity. Use condoms. , Do not smoke. , Have regular physical checkups. , Have routine Pap tests and pelvic examinations. , Routinely check entire body for irregular growth of moles.

How is Vulvar cancer diagnosed?

Vulvar cancer is diagnosed by biopsy, removing a section of tissue for examination in a laboratory by a pathologist.

How to treat Vulvar cancer?

The treatment depends upon whether the cancer has spread to involve other tissues in the pelvis or not. It also depends on the general health of the patient and permission for operations.

Generally treatment for patients with cancer of the vulva may include surgery :

  • laser surgery to destroy abnormal cells
  • Excision of the cancer cells and a margin of normal appearing skin around it.
  • vulvectomy – surgical removal of part of all of the tissues of the Vulvar
  • radiation therapy or chemotherapy
Vulval cancer
Vulval cancer

Vaginal Cancer

The vagina is the birth canal. Cancer of the vagina is a very rare kind of cancer in women.

What are the most common risk factors for uterine cancer?

Half of women affected are older than 60, with most between ages 50 and 70.  A history of exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES) as a fetus or cervical cancer or precancerous conditions

or uterine prolapse is a risk factor. Infection with human papillomavirus (HPV) infection has been associated with vaginal cancer. Problems like vaginal adenosis or vaginal irritation raises vaginal cancer risks.

What are the symptoms of vaginal cancer?

The symptoms may resemble other conditions or medical problems so consult your physician for diagnosis. The following are the most common symptoms, bloody discharge and bleeding during sexual intercourse or bleeding from the vagina after the menopause.

How is vaginal cancer diagnosed?

Vaginal cancer can be detected visually, using a magnifying instrument called a colposcope.

A biopsy is always necessary to confirm the diagnosis, and then further tests such as scans can also be used to determine the extent to which the cancer has already spread.

How can vaginal cancer be prevented?

  • Avoid being infected with HPV, a sexually transmitted virus.
  • Sexual partner should always wear a condom correctly during intercourse. Recent research shows that condoms provide some protection against HPV.
  • Limit the amount of sexual partners.
  • Pap smear may also be able to detect some cases of vaginal cancer before symptoms are experienced so attend regular gynecological checkups and Pap smear.

How to treat vaginal cancer?

The treatment depends upon whether the cancer has spread to involve other tissues in the pelvis or not. It also depends on the general health of the patient and permission for operations.

surgery, including:

  • laser surgery to remove the cancer, including LEEP (loop electro excision procedure)
  • local excision to remove the cancer
  • (partial) vaginectomy to remove the vagina
  • Chemotherapy – the use of anticancer drugs to treat cancerous cells.
  • Radiotherapy is aimed at destroying tumor cells that the gynecologist cannot see.
Vaginal cancer
Vaginal cancer

Uterine cancer

The uterus is a hollow pear-shaped organ in the woman’s lower abdomen. Cancer of the uterus is the most common cancer of the female reproductive tract. Cancer of the uterus is not common during the child bearing period. It usually occurs around the time of menopause. Because it grows slowly and women are alerted abnormal bleeding from the vagina, most cancers are detected and treated at an early stage and cure rates following surgery are very high.

What are the most common risk factors for uterine cancer?

Uterine cancer is common around the age of 50 or over. A history of endometrial hyperplasia (thickened uterine inner lining) is a risk factor. Medical problems like being overweight or being diabetic or hypertensive can result in uterine cancer. History of other cancers or taking tamoxifen for breast cancer treatment or prevention or taking estrogen replacement therapy without progesterone (ERT) is a risk factor.

What are the symptoms of cancer of the uterus?

The symptoms may resemble other conditions or medical problems so consult your physician for diagnosis. Symptoms will vary according to whether or not the woman is still having periods. If she is still having periods then the cancer may make her periods more irregular or heavier. If her periods have stopped, then any bleeding from the vagina is abnormal and should be investigated.

How is cancer of the uterus diagnosed?

Diagnosis includes a medical history and physical exam, including a pelvic exam to feel the vagina, rectum, and lower abdomen for masses or growths. The only certain means of diagnosis is a biopsy by dilation and curettage or hysteroscopy. Ultrasound examination is a very useful tool since it enables a doctor to identify uterine cancer and certain features that might make him or her suspect a cancer.

How can uterine cancer be prevented?

  • Use birth control pills.
  • Maintain a healthy weight and participate in physical activity.
  • Ask your doctor if he/she can prescribe you progesterone.
  • Talk with your doctor about how often you should be screened for uterine cancer especially if you have factors that increase your risk of getting the cancer.
  • See your doctor right away if you have abnormal bleeding from the vagina.

How is cancer of the uterus treated?

The treatment depends upon whether the cancer has spread to involve other tissues in the pelvis or not. It also depends on the general health of the patient and permission for operations.

surgery, including:

  • Hysterectomy – surgical removal of the uterus, usually with removal of the tubes and ovaries. The five-year survival rates following surgery are over 70 per cent.
  • Chemotherapy – the use of anticancer drugs to treat cancerous cells.
  • Radiotherapy is aimed at destroying tumor cells that the gynecologist cannot see.
  • Hormonal therapy
Uterine cancer
Uterine cancer

Ovarian cancer

The ovaries are 2 female reproductive organs located in the pelvis, one on each side of the uterus. They produce eggs and the female hormones which control the development of female body characteristics and regulate the menstrual cycle and pregnancy. Ovarian cancer is a disease of unknown cause.

What are the most common risk factors for ovarian cancer?

Ovarian cancer is most common in menopausal women (over 50 years of age). Rarely, ovarian cancer can run in families. Sometimes infertility or having a first child after the age of 30 is a risk factor .Also personal history of breast or colon cancer is a risk factor.

What are the symptoms of ovarian cancer?

The symptoms may resemble other conditions or medical problems so consult your physician for diagnosis. The following are the most common symptoms of ovarian cancer: general discomfort in the lower abdomen, weight loss, diarrhea or constipation, or frequent urination, bleeding from the vagina or build up of fluid around the lungs, which may cause shortness of breath.

How is ovarian cancer diagnosed?

Ovarian cancer may be discovered by chance during a routine gynecological examination or it may be discovered because the tumor has grown so large that you can feel it, or because it is pressing on the bladder or intestines.

Diagnosis includes a medical history and physical exam, including a pelvic exam to feel the vagina, rectum, and lower abdomen for masses or growths. The only certain means of diagnosis are either an operation or a biopsy. Ultrasound examination is a very useful tool since it enables a doctor to identify an ovarian tumor and certain features that might make him or her suspect a cancer.

How can ovarian cancer be prevented?

  • healthy diet (high in fruits, vegetables, grains, and low in saturated fat)
  • birth control pills
  • pregnancy and breast feeding

How to treat ovarian cancer?

The treatment depends upon whether the cancer has spread to involve other tissues in the pelvis or not. It also depends on the general health of the patient and permission for operations.

– surgery, including:

  • Surgery to remove the uterus, both Fallopian tubes and ovaries.
  • Pelvic lymph node dissection – removal of some lymph nodes from the pelvis.
  • Chemotherapy – the use of anticancer drugs to treat cancerous cells.
  • Radiotherapy is aimed at destroying tumor cells that the gynecologist cannot see.
Ovarian cancer
Ovarian cancer

Cervical Cancer

What is cancer cervix?

The cervix is the lower part of the uterus and acts as a gate to the uterus.

What are the most common risk factors for cervical cancer?

Cervical cancer is commonest among the over 50s but it can affect all age groups. A viral infection of the cervix is present in most cases (especially Human papiloma virus). Smoking appears to increase a woman’s risk of developing cervical cancer, and there may also be a link to the numbers of sexual partners a woman has had at a young age.

What are the symptoms of cervical cancer?

The symptoms may resemble other conditions or medical problems so consult your physician for diagnosis. Symptoms of cervical cancer usually do not appear until abnormal cervical cells become cancerous and invade nearby tissue. While sometimes no symptoms are seen, most cause the woman to experience bleeding between her periods or after sex.

How is cervical cancer diagnosed?

Cervical cancer can only be diagnosed through a biopsy of the cervix which is obtained by loop electrosurgical excision, colposcopy or cone biopsy.

How can cervical cancer be prevented?

  • Routine, annual pelvic examinations and Pap tests can detect precancerous conditions that often can be treated before cancer develops. Invasive cancer that does occur wouldlikely be found at an earlier stage. Follow up on abnormal Pap smears is equally important.
  • Limit the amount of sexual partners you have.
  • Quit smoking
  • Get the HPV vaccine. The vaccine is most effective when given to young women before they become sexually active.

How is cervical cancer treated?

The treatment depends upon whether the cancer has spread to involve other tissues in the pelvis or not. It also depends on the general health of the patient and permission for operations.

– surgery, including:

  • Cryosurgery – using a very cold probe to freeze and kill cancer cells.
  • Laser surgery – use of a powerful beam of light to destroy abnormal cells.
  • LEEP (loop electro excision procedure)
  • Hysterectomy – surgery to remove the uterus, including the cervix.
  • Radiotherapy is aimed at destroying tumor cells that the gynecologist cannot see.
  • Chemotherapy – the use of anticancer drugs to treat cancerous cells.
Cancer Cervix
Cancer cervix