Understanding Cervical Cancer

The Facts on Cervical Cancer

Risk Factors & Strategies to Reduce Your Risk

The following factors have been shown to increase your risk for Cervical Cancer

Modifiable Factors: The following actions are controllable, and therefore, you should do your best to avoid as many of these actions as possible. If something is unavoidable, be conscientious about your other actions to help combat the risk!

Non-Modifiable Factors: The following cannot be changed. However, these factors are important to know, so you can be cognizant of your lifestyle choices and understand the circumstances!

Help reduce your risk for Cervical Cancer with these choices

Symptoms & Early Detection


Early Symptoms 

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Unusual Discharge
  • Pain during sex
  • Pain in the pelvic region

Late-Stage Symptoms

  • Swelling of the legs
  • Problems urinating or having bowel movements
  • Blood in your urine (14)

These symptoms are not exclusive to cervical cancer. The important thing to note is whether you are experiencing persistent changes. If so, it is important to contact your doctor about your situation.

Early Detection

5-Year Survival Rate by Stage

Percent Diagnosed by Stage

There is a a very clear benefit to catching cervical cancer early; however, only 69% of eligible individuals are getting the recommended screening services.

Who Should be Screened?

  • 21-65: screenings are typically recommended between the ages of 21 and 65
  • Any individual with a Cervix: Women and transgender individuals with intact cervices should be screened. 
    • If you had a hysterectomy, you no longer need to be screened.
You should get a pap smear every 3 years between 21-65.

What to Expect at a Screening

Treatments for Cervical Cancer

  • Surgery: Removal of cancer regions of the uterus that would include the cervix
  • Chemotherapy: Drugs designed to eliminate cancer cells
  • Radiation Therapy: Beams of high-energy to kill cancer cells
  • Targeted Therapy: A common drug used is Avastin
  • Immunotherapy: New research that leverages your immune system to attack cancer cells