Signs and symptoms of cervical cancer explained

New research has found that obesity doubles a woman’s risk of developing cervical cancer. Here’s what you need to know about the signs and symptoms of cervical cancer

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Uterine cancer: Cancer Research discusses treatment in 2010

uterus or uterus Canceraffects one in 36 women in the UK at some point in their lives and new research has suggested so obesity causes about a third of cases.

The study, funded by Cancer Research UKfound that for every five additional units of body mass index (BMI), a woman’s risk of developing uterine cancer increases by 88%.

The researchers aim to use the study, which is one of the first of its kind to look at the impact of a lifetime higher BMI on risk of cervical cancer, to target drugs to regulate these hormone levels in people at higher risk of the disease .

The paper’s lead author, Emma Hazelwood, stated: “This study is an interesting first step in how genetic analysis could be used to uncover exactly how obesity causes cancer and what can be done to counteract it.”

What are the signs and symptoms of uterine cancer?

Vaginal bleeding or abdominal lumps are common symptoms of uterine cancer


(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The main symptoms of uterine cancer include:

  • Bleeding or spotting even after menopause
  • heavy periods that are unusual for you
  • vaginal bleeding between your periods
  • Changes in your vaginal discharge

The cancer also presents with other symptoms such as:

  • a lump or swelling in your abdomen or between your hip bones (pelvis)
  • Pain in the lower back or hip bones (pelvis)
  • pain during sex
  • blood in your urine

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to get checked out as soon as possible. According to the NHSfinding it earlier makes it easier to treat.

Who is at risk of developing cervical cancer?

Obesity is the second most common preventable cause of cancer


(Getty Images)

Anyone with a uterus can develop uterine cancer, including women, trans men, non-binary people, and intersex people with a uterus.

You are not at risk of developing womb cancer if your womb has been surgically removed (hysterectomy).

One of the main reasons for developing womb cancer is high levels of a hormone called estrogen, which can occur if you are overweight, have never had a child, are menopausal after the age of 55 some type of hormone replacement therapy.

Other risk factors for womb cancer include diabetes, family history, pelvic radiation, or use of drugs such as tamoxifen, which is used to treat breast cancer.

A third of uterine cancer cases are caused by obesity


(Getty Images/Science Photo Library RF)

How can you reduce your risk of developing womb cancer?

Uterine cancer can’t always be prevented, but there are steps you can take to reduce your risk, including:

  • Be sure to maintain a healthy weight

  • Stay active and exercise regularly

  • Eat a healthy diet and reduce alcohol consumption

  • Talk to a family doctor about birth control methods that may reduce your chance of developing womb cancer

  • If you are considering hormone replacement therapy, talk to a GP about which HRT is best for you

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