Cervical Cancer - Stages and Types of Cervical Cancer

What is Cervical Cancer?

Cervical cancer refers to the formation of a tumor in the cervix. Rarely, it is also called pelvic cancer, as the organ is situated in the pelvic region.

The cervix is an important part of the female reproductive system that connects the vagina with the uterus. When the cells present in the cervical lining start dividing uncontrollably, it leads to the formation of a tumor.

It is possible to reduce the risk of cervical cancer through specific cervical cancer prevention and screening practices.

How Common is Cervical Cancer?

In developing countries like India, cervical carcinoma is still a burden. It is the second most common cancer diagnosed among Indian women. The risk of cervical cancer is found to increase around the age of 45 and peak at 55.

A large percentage of invasive cervical tumor cases are associated with chronic HPV infection.

What are the Different Types of Cervical Cancer?

There are different types of cervical cancer based on the cell type from which it arises. A few cervical carcinoma types are more common than the others.

Most Common Types of Cervical Cancer

The following are the most common types of cervical cancer:

Rare Types of Cervical Cancer

The following are rare types of cervical carcinoma:

What are the Cervical Cancer Stages?

The staging of cervical carcinoma is done to determine the extent of the disease's spread. Cervical cancer stages 0, 1, and 2 refer to the early stages of cervical tumors, while cervical cancer stages 3 and 4 refer to advanced-stage cervical cancers. The following are the indicators of different stages of cervical cancer:


Cervical cancer is a significant burden in India. It is also found to be more common in women from rural areas than in women from urban areas. A lack of awareness, limited access to screening facilities, fear associated with the disease, etc., have become the biggest contributors to the increasing incidence. Becoming aware of this cancer, its early signs and symptoms, and its risk factors helps reduce the risk of this condition and ensure timely medical attention.

Frequently Asked Questions

In most cases, cervical carcinoma does not stop periods. However, it may cause various other problems associated with the menstrual cycle, including irregular bleeding, bleeding between periods, bleeding after menopause, and bleeding heavier than usual.

It is important to note that these problems are caused by other, less severe health conditions, too. Therefore, for a definitive diagnosis, it is necessary to see a doctor.

No, cervical carcinoma is not visible to the naked eye, especially in the early stages. However, as the disease progresses, one may start experiencing various symptoms. These signs and symptoms include abnormal bleeding between periods, after sexual intercourse, or after menopause. Unusual vaginal discharge, pain during intercourse, or pelvic pain could also be symptoms of this condition.

One must note that relying solely on visual cues can lead to a delayed diagnosis and a poor prognosis. Instead, it is advisable to opt for regular screening, which aids in early detection and timely cervical cancer treatment.

There is no such thing as "type 2 cervical cancer." The categorization of this disease is based on types (e.g., squamous cell carcinomas, adenocarcinomas, adenosquamous carcinomas, etc.) and 4 stages of cervical cancer (0 to IV).

Cervical carcinoma may affect women of various age groups; however, the risk significantly increases around the age of 45 and peaks around the age of 55.

Since the cervix is situated within the body, it is not possible to feel the tumor externally. Abnormal bleeding, pain, or discomfort are more commonly seen symptoms in cervical carcinoma patients.

Unusual discharge due to a cervical tumor can vary in color, consistency, and odor. The discharge may be pink, brown, or bloody. It may also be foul-smelling. Abnormal vaginal discharge can be caused by various other conditions, too. Therefore, it is important to see a doctor for a conclusive diagnosis.

Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers among Indian women. Possible reasons for this include a lack of awareness, limited access to regular screening, delayed diagnosis, etc. However, in recent years, significant efforts have been made in the direction of increasing awareness about this cancer and encouraging women to take HPV vaccinations and opt for regular screening.

Yes, it is possible to reduce the risk of a cervical tumor significantly. Chronic HPV infection is an important risk factor for cervical carcinoma, and vaccination against this virus can help reduce the risk of this cancer type. Along with HPV vaccination, regular screening can also help detect pre-cancerous changes way before they form cancer. Lastly, opting for safe sexual practices can also help reduce the risk of this condition.