6 symptoms that could be signs of cervical cancer

Credits: Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust

The World Health Organisation estimates that one woman dies every two minutes from cervical cancer. It is classed as the second most widespread female cancer. If the first symptoms do not appear immediately, some indicate that the disease is at an advanced stage. Learn how to recognise the symptoms so you can respond quickly.

1/ Pains in your legs

In the first phases of the disease, the cervix can hinder or diminish blood flow, leading to swelling and pain in the legs.

2/ Burning when you pee

Burning when you pee is a recurrent symptom in women affected by cervical cancer. Blood can also appear in the urine. Consult a doctor immediately if this happens.

3/ Bleeding after sex

The bleeding could be abundant, irregular and accompanied by pain in the pelvis, the spine and the legs.

4/ Anal pain

If the tumour is touching the rectum, the patient may feel pain in the anus, they may have difficulties passing stools or there could be blood in the stools.

5/ Kidney problems

If the tumour affects the upper urinary passages, it could cause an increase in the volume of the pelvis, which holds urine formed in the kidneys.

6/ Fistulas

At more advanced stages, the tumour could cause vesico-vaginal fistulas (abnormal passageways that form between the bladder and the vagina) or recto-vaginal fistulas (abnormal passageways between the rectum and the vagina).

Health problems that accompany cervical cancer

More rarely, other illnesses or health problems can accompany cervical cancer:

  • Bone metastasis: pain in the bones and bones which are easily get fractured
  • Pulmonary metastasis: difficulties with breathing, coughing, shortness of breath, bloody discharge from the lungs.
  • Weak immune system, coma.
  • Neurological symptoms: headaches, vomiting, double vision, problems with balance.
  • Fatigue, anaemia, loss of appetite.
  • Paraneoplastic syndrome, hypercalcemia (elevated calcium levels in the blood).

Do you suspect something is wrong? In all cases, there’s nothing to lose by getting checked out! Don’t hesitate to talk to your GP or gynaecologist.