Five main types of cancer affect a woman’s reproductive organs: cervix, ovary, uterus, vagina, and vulva.As a group, they are referred to as gynecologic cancers. They are
important because a significant number of these affect young females who
have not yet completed their families. Each cancer is unique, with
different signs, symptoms, and risk factors.
Warning signs for female gynecologic cancers include unusual vaginal
bleeding, pelvic pain or pressure, frequent or urgent need to urinate,
feeling full too quickly after eating, constipation, bloating, abdominal or
back pain, changes in the external genital area like skin colour, rashes,
sores and warts
Unfortunately, screening test (PAP smear, HPV testing, VIA/VILI) is
available only for cervical cancer. For other gynecologic cancers, the only
way is to recognize the early warning signs and consult a gynecologic
Consultation with a gynecologic oncologist also becomes important for
females who have multiple risk factors (obesity, women who never had
children,HIV,multiple sexual partners) or significant family history of
cancer. Such females can reduce their cancer risk by regular consultation
with screening tests and/or risk-reducing surgeries.
HPV infection is one of the preventable cause of female precancerous
lesions. A vaccine is now available that can be offered to young females
preferably in their teens.
Gynecological cancer treatment is showing a paradigm shift from
conventional treatment protocols and surgeries to tailored approach for
Some of the female cancers can now be managed by conservative surgeries
with preservation of important female structures.
At the same time various precautionary measures can be taken to confer as
little harm as possible to female hormonal, reproductive (child bearing)
and sexual function.
Thus it is important to consult a gynecologic oncologist while dealing with
any kind of cancer in females.