Tumors of the uterine cervix are known as cervical polyps, sometimes these polyps can be growths as opposed to cancerous tumors. The cervix is an important organ as it is what connects the uterus to the vagina. Polyps in the cervix are most often benign; however, there are instances in which these growths are a symptom of cervical cancer. Usually there is only one polyp in the cervix but this is not always the case.
There are many causes of cervical polyps, including cervical inflammation. Polyps can also occur following a cervical or vaginal infection. Mothers over the age of 20 are the most common victims of cervical polyps, with vaginal bleeding being the most common sign. Other indications that a polyp is present include menopausal bleeding, bloody vaginal discharge, or bleeding after intercourse. A proper diagnosis of cervical polyps is very important. Not all polyps are benign and they may indicate a more serious problem, such as sexually transmitted diseases and cancers.
Cervical Polyp Diagnosis
A proper diagnosis of a cervical polyp requires several steps. It is likely the doctor will start by inspecting the patient’s medical and sexual history. They will then give them a physical and pelvic examination that is designed to give the physician a physical a look at the polyp in question. A sample of vaginal discharge is tested for STDs and a pap smear will be done to check for cancerous cells.
A Proper diagnosis often results in the doctor removing the polyp, which is normally an outpatient procedure. The polyp can sometimes be twisted off the body without using any cutting or surgical tools. Bleeding and pain often result after this procedure. The polyp is then tested for cancer cells. Cervical cancer treatments depend on a variety of things. The patient’s health is assessed as is the stage of the cancer. Serious treatments such as chemotherapy or hysterectomy are often required for more serious cases of cervical cancer.
Misdiagnosis of cervical polyps can occur under a variety of conditions such as polyps being mistaken for other diseases. Often, polyps are misdiagnosed as being gonorrhea, uterine cancer, non-gonococcal urethritis or cervical cancer. Polyps are sometimes simply missed entirely for lengthy periods of time. A cancer misdiagnosis is a serious problem as the treatment itself may lead to serious problems for the patient’s health. Conversely, misdiagnosing the polyps as benign can lead to a cancer that is left untreated for too long.