Conditions InDepth: Cervical Cancer
Cervical cancer is a disease in which cancer cells grow in the cervix. The cervix is the lower, narrow part of the uterus that connects the uterus with the vagina. It is the outlet of the uterus through which menses flow and babies are delivered. Normally, the cells of the cervix divide in a regulated manner. If cells keep dividing in an unregulated manner, a mass of tissue forms. This mass is called a tumor. A tumor can be benign or malignant.In the cervix, cancer can arise either from the squamous cells (squamous cell carcinoma) that line the outer surface of the cervix or the glandular cells that are found in the channel that connects to the rest of the womb (adenocarcinoma).
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- Squamous cell cancer—arises form the cells on the outermost portion of the cervix that connects with the vagina
- Adenocarcinoma—arises from the gland cells that are found on the inner lining of the cervical canal
American Cancer Societywebsite. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/docroot/home/index.asp. Accessed January 3, 2014.
Centers for Disease Control and Preventionwebsite. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov. Accessed January 3, 2014.
Cervical cancer. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated December 7, 2013. Accessed January 3, 2014.
Grady D. Guidelines push back age for cervical cancer tests. The New York Times website. Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/20/health/20pap.html?%5Fr=1. Published November 20, 2009. Accessed January 3, 2014.
National Cancer Institutewebsite. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov. Accessed January 3, 2014.
- Reviewer: Mohei Abouzied, MD, FACP
- Review Date: 12/2014
- Update Date: 12/20/2014