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What Are the Symptoms of Cervical Cancer?

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The symptoms of cervical cancer are not always obvious. That’s why cervical cancer is commonly diagnosed during a routine pelvic exam by your gynecologist or other women’s health provider. A Pap test can find abnormal cells or your provider may detect a tumor on the cervix. A biopsy can confirm whether you have cervical cancer.

Symptoms of Cervical Cancer

Although symptoms are not always obvious, these signs can alert you to the possibility of cervical cancer:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding, such as heavier than normal periods, bleeding with sex, bleeding in between periods, or sporadic bleeding
  • Abnormal discharge
  • Pelvic pain or pain with sex
  • Blood in the urine or stool
  • Swelling in the legs

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should see a women’s health provider for a pelvic exam and further evaluation. Your gynecologist, family doctor, nurse practitioner, or other provider can perform this evaluation for you.

Treatment and Management by a Gynecologic Oncologist

Following a cervical cancer diagnosis, the next step will be to see a gynecologic oncologist.  Any women’s health provider can refer you appropriately to your nearest gynecologic oncologist.

Gynecologic and radiation oncologists have special training in treating cancers of a woman’s reproductive system. Treatment may involve surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy. With appropriate and prompt treatment, cervical cancer can often be cured.

Clinical trials use new treatment options to see if they are safe and effective. If you have cancer, talk with your doctor if you may want to take part.

author name

Erin E Medlin MD

Erin E. Medlin, MD, is a gynecologic oncology specialist with LG Health Physicians Gynecologic Oncology.

Education: Undergraduate–The Ohio State University; Medical School–University of Cincinnati College of Medicine; Internship and Residency–University of Colorado School of Medicine; Fellowship–University of Wisconsin.

Call: 717-544-3600

About LG Health Hub

The LG Health Hub features breaking medical news and straightforward advice to help individuals of all ages make healthy choices and reach their wellness goals. The blog puts articles by trusted Lancaster General Health clinical experts, good 'n healthy recipes, videos, patient stories, and health risk assessments at your fingertips.


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