Cervical cancer symptoms
In its early stages, cervical cancer usually has no symptoms. The only way to know if there are abnormal cells in the cervix that may develop into cervical cancer is to have a cervical screening test.
If symptoms occur, they usually include:
- vaginal bleeding between periods, after menopause, or during or after sexual intercourse
- pelvic pain
- pain during sexual intercourse
- an unusual vaginal discharge
- heavier periods or periods that last longer than usual.
Although these symptoms can also be caused by other conditions or medicines, it is very important to rule out cervical cancer. See your general practitioner (GP) if you are worried or the symptoms are ongoing. This is important for anyone with a cervix, whether straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or intersex.
A/Prof Penny Blomfield, Gynaecological Oncologist, Hobart Women’s Specialists, and Chair, Australian Society of Gynaecological Oncologists, TAS; Karina Campbell, Consumer; Carmen Heathcote, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council Queensland; Dr Pearly Khaw, Consultant Radiation Oncologist, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; A/Prof Jim Nicklin, Director, Gynaecological Oncology, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, and Associate Professor Gynaecologic Oncology, The University of Queensland; Prof Martin K Oehler, Director, Gynaecological Oncology, Royal Adelaide Hospital, SA; Dr Megan Smith, Program Manager – Cervix, Cancer Council NSW; Pauline Tanner, Cancer Nurse Coordinator – Gynaecology, WA Cancer & Palliative Care Network, WA; Tamara Wraith, Senior Clinician, Physiotherapy Department, The Royal Women’s Hospital, VIC. We also thank the health professionals, consumers and editorial teams who have worked on previous editions of this title.
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