Cervical cancer

Cervical cancer, along with breast cancer and skin cancer, is among the types of the disease that most affect Brazilian women. The disease arises when cells in the cervix, which is the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina change, producing a tumor. As the tumor usually grows slowly, uterine cancer may have no symptoms. As the disease progresses, symptoms such as pain and bleeding develop during intercourse.

Women who have started sex very early, who have or have had many partners, are at higher risk for this cancer. These factors leave them more exposed to sexually transmitted diseases, such as HPV, the main cause of this cancer.


Uterine cancer can be detected by a pap smear, which examines cells collected from cervical samples.

Every woman should have a cervical cancer screening test from the age of 18 or after first sexual intercourse.

Initially, the pap smear should be done every year or less frequently at the doctor's discretion. If two exams followed at a one-year interval show normal results, the exam may be done every three years.


If detected early, it is possible to treat uterine cancer with surgery. Then treatment for uterine cancer consists of uterus removal and radiotherapy and chemotherapy sessions. Each case should be evaluated and advised by a physician.


The best way to prevent cervical cancer is to have a Pap smear and always use a condom. There is already a uterine cancer vaccine recommended for women ages 9-26.

The recommendation to use the vaccine at such an early age is because it works best in girls who have not yet started their sex life and therefore have not had contact with HPV. The vaccine does not protect people already infected with HPV and does not immunize against all types of uterine cancer.

What Is Cervical Cancer? - Joshua G. Cohen, MD | UCLA Obstetrics and Gynecology (April 2024)

  • Cancer, Prevention and Treatment
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