Relationship between cervical cancer and pregnancy

Cervical cancer is cancer of the cervix, usually asymptomatic, and human papillomavirus (HPV)Human papillomavirus) is the main cause of this cancer and cancer is usually preceded by a defect or tumor in the cervical tissue.

But what is the relationship between cervical cancer and pregnancy? Continue reading this article for the detailed answer:

Cervical cancer and pregnancy: what is the effect on fertility?

Treatments a woman with cervical cancer receives can affect her ability to have children. If the cancer is detected early and is confined to the cervix, the doctor may recommend treatment that may preserve the possibility of pregnancy, including:

  • Conization biopsy: Only part of the cervical cancer is removed.
  • Radical trachelectomy: Most of the cervix is ​​removed without touching the rest of the uterus.

A patient may require a hysterectomy in addition to chemotherapy and radiotherapy when cervical cancer is detected at a late stage, which may affect the possibility of pregnancy.

Some patients may resort to egg freezing or in vitro fertilization to conceive.

Cervical cancer and pregnancy: what is the effect on pregnancy?

Cervical cancer can be detected through a pap smear, which is often taken during pregnancy, or through a clinical examination of symptoms a pregnant woman may experience, such as bleeding, and cervical cancer is usually discovered during pregnancy in the early stages of the disease, which makes it easier to treat.

It is noteworthy that cervical cancer detected during pregnancy does not grow or spread faster than cancer diagnosed in non-pregnant women, and in many cases a pregnant woman with cervical cancer does not need to terminate the pregnancy, but in in some cases it may be necessary for the baby to be born earlier than planned.

In addition to the above, a pregnant woman with cervical cancer often has the same disease course and outcome as any non-pregnant woman.

Cervical cancer and pregnancy: what is the effect on the fetus?

If the mother has cancer during pregnancy, the cancer usually does not affect the fetus and will not affect it, but the treatments the mother receives may affect her or her fetus.

In addition to the above, various procedures and treatments for cervical cancer can carry some risks that can affect the pregnancy and fetus. These risks include the following:

Cervical Cancer and Pregnancy: How Is It Treated During Pregnancy?

There are a number of factors that influence the choice of the right treatment method for cervical cancer during pregnancy, and these factors include:

  • The personal wish of the pregnant woman for treatment.
  • How advanced the cancer is.
  • The stage at which the disease was diagnosed.

There are several options for treating cervical cancer, and these options include the following:

  • Surgery: Either a cone biopsy, a radical cervical excision, or a hysterectomy.
  • Chemotherapy: Using chemotherapy to kill cancer cells.
  • Radiotherapy: This treatment uses high-energy rays to kill cancer cells.
  • Targeted therapy: These therapies rely on specific characteristics of cancer cells to target the drug specifically to these cells without affecting normal cells.
  • Immunotherapy: This type of treatment uses the body’s immune system to kill cancer cells.

The choice of the type of treatment depends on the stage of pregnancy as follows:

1. First trimester

If the patient is less than three months pregnant and wishes to continue the pregnancy, the doctor may recommend delaying treatment until a longer gestational period has passed. This is because chemotherapy can harm the fetus during the early months of pregnancy, and some patients may choose to terminate the pregnancy early, if the cancer is detected in the early stages of pregnancy, so that they can have treatment without having to worry about the effects that may occur. occur in the fetus.

2. The second or third trimester of pregnancy

The doctor may consider chemotherapy or surgery at this point in the pregnancy, and in some cases may suggest waiting until delivery before starting treatment.

Pregnant women with cervical cancer usually deliver their babies early by cesarean section, and some may need a hysterectomy at the same time.

If a pregnant woman’s cancer is at an advanced stage and she chooses not to receive treatment, there is an increased risk of cancer cells spreading.

Thus, the relationship between cervical cancer and pregnancy has been clarified in detail.

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