By Dr. Gerald B. Parker, III, M.D., J.D. Cancer of the cervix is generally diagnosed after signs are found in an abnormal Pap smear or Pap test. However, an abnormal test does not always mean cervical cancer. If an abnormal test occurs, more tests should be run.
How Do Doctors Detect Cervical Cancer?
Early signs of cervical cancer can also include:
If a woman reports the symptoms above or has an abnormal Pap smear and general physical exam, doctors should perform a test called a colposcopy in order to detect whether cancer is present. This test involves the patient lying on an exam table while the doctor inserts a device called a speculum to see inside the vagina and cervix. The doctor uses another medical device called a colposcope to examine the cervix closely; it remains outside the body but has a magnifying lens to see the surface of the cervix properly.
A cervical biopsy can also be used to detect and diagnose pre-cancerous cells and cancers of the cervix. These biopsy procedures are called colposcopic biopsy, endocervical curettage biopsy, and cone biopsy.
According to Cancer.org, the key to surviving cervical cancer is to have a doctor detect it before it becomes what is known as a "true cancer."
Could Your Wife's Cervical Cancer Been Detected Earlier?
With all of that being said, there are a few ways that cervical cancer might have been detected:
Please note: If your wife is experiencing symptoms as described in this article, it doesn’t mean that she has cancer. There are several other medical illnesses that could cause these symptoms to occur. See a medical professional if she is seeing similar symptoms to the ones listed here.
If you believe your wife's cervical cancer could have been detected earlier than it was, you should contact our law firm. We review the results of all tests performed in the time leading up to a cancer diagnosis to determine whether a doctor or pathologist made a mistake by not diagnosing your wife's cervical cancer quickly enough. If we do find an error was made, we can help you decide your next steps.
The trick to surviving cancer is by detecting it early. Failure to see the signs and diagnose it means that a patient suffered needlessly and missed out on precious months or years of their life. If you believe a doctor missed the signs, contact us today for a free consultation.
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