Stage 2 Cervical Cancer: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment
Stage 2 cervical cancer is one of the 4 stages of cancer that attacks the cervix or cervix in women. This is a condition that needs to be treated immediately so that the condition does not get worse. Check out the explanation of the symptoms and prevention in the following review.
What is Stage 2 Cervical Cancer?
Stage II cervical cancer is a condition when cancer cells have spread to the outside of the cervical neck and a number of tissues in the cervix. If stage 1 cervical cancer is still relatively difficult to detect, then stage 2 cervical cancer is starting to be easier to identify.
Symptoms of Stage 2 Cervical Cancer
Cervical cancer does not only show characteristics and symptoms. Therefore, women who have reached the minimum age of 21 years and are classified as having active sex are advised to undergo an examination. This step is to find out whether there is a possibility of the appearance of cancer cells in the cervix.
However, this stage of cervical cancer generally has specific characteristics and symptoms that can be identified easily.
The characteristics of stage II cervical cancer include:
- Cancer cells are visible on the outside of the cervix.
- The size of cancer cells ranges from 4 cm or less (stage IIA1 cervical cancer) and above 4 cm (stage IIA2 and IIB cervical cancer).
- Bleeding after intercourse, both during menstruation and in the menopausal period.
- The vagina is runny and emits a foul odor.
- Vagina feels painful and uncomfortable during intercourse.
If you experience the symptoms above, you may have cervical cancer at this stage, although it does not rule out the possibility that this is caused by another type of disease.
Therefore, you should immediately consult a doctor for further examination before the condition gets worse.
Also Read: 11 Important Steps in Addressing a Cancer Diagnosis
Types of Stage 2 Cervical Cancer
Determination of the type of cancer is seen based on the severity or how far the cancer cells have spread in the cervix. Here’s the explanation:
1. Stage IIA Cervical Cancer
Stage IIA cervical cancer is a type of cervical cancer where cancer cells have spread from the bottom to the top of the vagina. This condition itself is further divided into two based on the size of the cancer cells:
- stage IIA1 cervical cancer, that is, the size of the cancer cells is 4 cm or less.
- stage IIA2 cervical cancer, ie the size of the cancer cells above 4 cm.
2. Stage IIB Cervical Cancer
Stage IIB cervical cancer is a type of advanced cancer from stage IIA cervical cancer where the spread of cancer cells has reached the tissues around the cervix.
The size of cancer cells in this condition is 5 cm or more with the ability to spread which is certainly ‘better’ than cervical cancer cells 2A.
Diagnosis of Stage 2 Cervical Cancer
Before diagnosing cervical cancer at this stage, the doctor will first carry out a series of special examination procedures.
The following are procedures for diagnosing cervical cancer that are commonly used by doctors, including:
1. Pap Smear
This is an examination method to detect cervical cancer which is carried out by using a special tool called a speculum.
This tool will be inserted into the vagina and then the doctor will take samples of cervical cells using other tools that are shaped like a brush or spatula.
This cervical cell sample will then be examined to see how far the cancer cells have developed in the cervix.
2. Human Papillomavirus Test
In addition to pap smears, doctors will usually also do an HPV test to identify the presence and type of the HPV virus that causes a person to suffer from cervical cancer.
Just like the pap smear test, the HPV test is also done by taking a sample of cells from the cervix for further testing.
3. Supporting Examination
When the doctor finds abnormal cells in the cervix and the area around the vagina, investigations may also be carried out to confirm the diagnosis.
The supporting examination procedures referred to generally include:
- Blood test.
- CT scans.
- Pelvic ultrasound.
Also Read: Getting to Know Immunotherapy, Methods for Treating Various Types of Cancer
Stage 2 Cervical Cancer Treatment
After the patient is diagnosed with cervical cancer at this stage, the doctor will determine the appropriate treatment method for dealing with it
The following are methods of treating stage 2 cervical cancer, including:
Chemotherapy is the most important method of treating stage II cervical cancer. Chemotherapy is done together with radiotherapy with the aim of making radiation therapy more effective in treating the disease.
Chemotherapy will use Cisplatin or Cisplatin plus 5-fluorouracil to support performance. Cisplatin will be given once per week during radiation therapy. Whereas Cisplatin plus 5-fluorouracil given once a month during radiotherapy.
Chemotherapy is ideally done after the patient has undergone a surgical procedure.
Surgery is also one of the treatment methods performed on stage II cervical cancer patients.
The doctor will first look at the patient’s condition such as age and pregnancy plans before deciding to perform surgery.
In cases where stage II cervical cancer does not require surgery, doctors usually use radiotherapy to cure stage 2 cervical cancer in patients.
However, radiotherapy can also be done after surgery if cancer cells are still found in the cervical tissue, blood vessels, and lymph nodes.
Radiotherapy is carried out in conjunction with other therapies, namely chemotherapy, but in some cases, radiotherapy is carried out alone without chemotherapy.
The frequency of radiotherapy to cure stage II cervical cancer varies from person to person. Ideally, radiotherapy is done 5 times a week over a period of 6-7 weeks.
Also Read: 9 Types of Cancer in Women that Often Occur and Need to Watch Out for!
Chance of Healing
Stage II cervical cancer can actually be cured, as long as the handling is done quickly and precisely.
In fact, the chances of being cured for cases of cervical cancer at this stage reach 70-80 percent. However, this depends on how quickly and precisely the medical treatment is carried out.
Prevention of Stage 2 Cervical Cancer
Some things you can do to prevent stage II cervical cancer, including:
1. Routine Screening
Doing pap smears and HPV tests is important for women. Following are the conditions:
- Age 21-29 years: once every 3 years.
- Age 30-65 years: every 3 years (pap smear), every 5 years (HPV test), and every 5 years (combination pap smear screening and HPV test).
Because cervical cancer at this stage is caused by an infection with the HPV virus, the way to prevent it is to get vaccinated. The good news, a vaccine against the HPV virus has been found.
All you have to do is develop the initiative to vaccinate against cervical cancer to prevent or at least minimize the risk of getting this deadly disease in the future.
For those of you who live in Jakarta and want to get the HPV vaccine, you can visit the pharmacy my farm which is in Kelapa Gading Square. Click here for more information.
3. Healthy Lifestyle
Lifestyle also has a major influence on a person’s chances of developing stage II cervical cancer. If you adopt a healthy lifestyle, the risk of contracting this disease will be even smaller. Some of the things that must be done include:
- Practice safe sex.
- Not changing partners.
- Avoid sexual intercourse at an insufficient age.
- Don’t smoke.
That’s the information about stage 2 cervical cancer that you need to know. Hopefully this information is useful, Healthy Friends!
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- Felman, A. 2019. What you need to know about cervical cancer. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/159821.php (Accessed November 4, 2019)
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