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Causes and Symptoms of cervical cancer

Studies have found a number of factors that may increase the risk of cervical cancer.
– HPV infection: HPV is a group of viruses that can infect the cervix. An HPV infection that doesn’t go away can cause cervical cancer in some women. HPV is the cause of nearly all cervical cancers. A vaccine for females ages 9 to 26 protects against two types of HPV infection that cause cervical cancer.
– Smoking: Among women who are infected with HPV, smoking cigarettes slightly increases the risk of cervical cancer.
– Weakened immune system.
– Sexual history: Women who have had many sexual partners have a higher risk of developing cervical cancer or vice versa.
– Irregular screening tests: Women who have not regularly had a Pap test (smear) are at increased risk of cervical cancer. In particular, many women over age 60 have not had regular Pap tests and are at increased risk.

Symptoms of Cervical Cancer

Early cervix cancer generally produces no signs or symptoms. But, as the cancer grows, symptoms may include :
– Abnormal bleeding.
– Unusual heavy discharge : It may be foul smelling, watery, thick, or contain mucus. It varies from woman to woman.
– Bleeding after sexual intercourse, douching, or a pelvic exam.
– Menstrual periods that last longer and are heavier than before.
– Pelvic pain and pain during sex.
– Pain during urination.
– Bleeding between regular menstrual periods.

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