Cervical Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment
If your doctor says that you have cervical cancer, ask to be referred to a gynecologic oncologist—a doctor who has been trained to treat cancers of a woman's reproductive system. This doctor will work with you to create a treatment plan.
The extent of disease is referred to as the stage. Information about the size of the cancer or how far it has spread is often used to determine the stage. Doctors use this information to plan treatment and to monitor progress.
For more information about stages of cervical cancer, visit the National Cancer Institute (NCI).
There are several ways to treat cervical cancer. The treatment depends on the type of cervical cancer and how far it has spread. Treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, and/or radiation.
- Surgery: Doctors remove cancer tissue in an operation.
- Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs to stop or slow the growth of cancer cells. Chemotherapy may cause side effects, but these often get better or go away when chemotherapy is over. Chemotherapy drugs may be given in several forms, including pills or through an IV (intravenous) injection.
- Radiation: Radiation uses high-energy rays (similar to X-rays) to try to kill the cancer cells and stop them from spreading. The rays are aimed at the part of the body where the cancer is.
Different treatments may be provided by different doctors on your medical team.
- Gynecologic oncologists are doctors who have been trained to treat cancers of a woman's reproductive system.
- Surgeons are doctors who perform operations.
- Medical oncologists are doctors who are experts in cancer and treat cancers with medicines.
- Radiation oncologists are doctors who treat cancers with radiation.
Visit NCI for more information about treatments for cervical cancer.
If you have cervical cancer, you may want to take part in a clinical trial. Clinical trials study new treatment options to see if they are safe and effective. Visit the sites listed below for more information about clinical trials.
- NIH Clinical Research Trials and You (National Institutes of Health)
- Educational Materials About Clinical Trials (National Cancer Institute)
- Search for Clinical Trials (National Cancer Institute)
- ClinicalTrials.gov (National Institutes of Health)
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Division of Cancer Prevention and Control
4770 Buford Hwy NE
Atlanta, GA 30341
TTY: (888) 232-6348
- Contact CDC-INFO