Symptoms and signs of cervical cancer

When should I see a doctor?

Cervical cancerAbnormal, uncontrolled cell division resulting in a malignant tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body. does not usually produce any symptoms during its early stages. Because of this, it is very important to have regular cervical screening tests.

These tests can detect cells that may become cancerousMalignant, a tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body. - these pre-cancerousMalignant, a tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body. cells can then be treated to prevent cervical cancerAbnormal, uncontrolled cell division resulting in a malignant tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body. from developing.

Learn more about the cervical screening test in the Tests and diagnosis section.

In its later stages, cervical cancerAbnormal, uncontrolled cell division resulting in a malignant tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body. may produce symptoms including:

  • Unusually long or heavy periods
  • Bleeding after sex
  • Pain during sex
  • Bleeding after the menopauseThe time of a woman’s life when her ovaries stop releasing an egg (ovum) on a monthly cycle.
  • Abnormal vaginal discharge
  • Pain in your back or pelvis
  • Pain when you urinate
  • Blood in your urine or stools.

These symptoms may be due to many other conditions that are not cervical cancerAbnormal, uncontrolled cell division resulting in a malignant tumour that may invade surrounding tissues or spread to distant parts of the body.. However, it is important to see your doctor as soon as possible if you experience any of these symptoms.

I first noticed something was wrong when I started bleeding between my periods. The bloodA fluid that transports oxygen and other substances through the body, made up of blood cells suspended in a liquid. was a dark, rusty, brown colour, as though it was rather old. Coral