Cervical cancer: these symptoms are indications of a disease

Cervical cancer: these symptoms are indications of a disease

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Treated thousands of women with cervical cancer

Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers in women. Every year, thousands of patients with this diagnosis are treated in hospital. There are no early and sure signs of this cancer, but some alarm signals may indicate cervical cancer.

As the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) announced on World Cancer Day on February 4, 2020, 14,509 women with the diagnosis of cervical cancer were treated in hospital in Germany in 2017. Almost every second affected patient was between 45 and 65 years old. This cancer usually takes a long time to develop. He can make himself known through certain complaints.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer with death in women

Between 2007 and 2017, an average of 1,570 women died of cervical cancer each year from 2007 to 2017, or 1.5 percent of all women who died from cancer.

For comparison: Breast cancer is the most common cancer with fatalities in women with a share of 19 percent. In 2017, 18,400 women died of breast cancer.

Signs of cervical cancer

As the German Medical Association (BÄK) and the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV) explain on their joint portal “”, approximately 4,600 women in Germany develop cervical cancer (cervical cancer) every year. Almost two thirds of these are discovered so early that cancer is usually curable.

This cancer usually does not cause any symptoms at the beginning. There are no early and sure signs of cervical cancer. At first, indefinite symptoms often appear, such as unexplained weight loss or abdominal pain.

Some of the signs that may indicate cervical cancer include:

  • Unusual bleeding, for example outside the rule, after sexual intercourse or after the menopause.
  • Menstrual bleeding that lasts more than seven days.
  • Malodorous or flesh-colored vaginal discharge.
  • Pain in the lower abdomen or pelvis.
  • Painful bowel movements or urination.

Anyone who notices such signs should see the gynecologist.

Almost always caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

As the Federal Statistical Office writes, cervical cancer is almost exclusively caused by sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV). In most cases, HPV infections heal themselves. However, chronic infections with so-called high-risk types can trigger cancer:
In women, it is especially cancer of the cervix, the third most common cancer in the female genital organs.

In men, HPV infection can cause mouth and throat cancer. In 2017, significantly more men (39,289) than women (14,871) came to a hospital for treatment due to malignant neoplasm on the lip, in the oral cavity and in the throat.

Possible other risk factors for this cancer can include excessive tobacco and / or alcohol consumption.

To prevent the development of cervical cancer in particular, the Standing Vaccination Commission (STIKO) has recommended HPV vaccination for girls between the ages of nine and 14 since 2007. Since 2018, this vaccination recommendation has also applied to boys. (ad)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.


  • Federal Statistical Office (Destatis): Number of the week: 14,500 women with cervical cancer diagnosed inpatient treatment in 2017, (accessed: February 4, 2020), Federal Statistical Office (Destatis)
  • Federal Chamber of Physicians (BÄK) and National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV): cervical cancer, (retrieval: 04.02.2020),

Video: How to Prevent Cervical Cancer? Symptoms and Risk Factors of Cervical Cancer You Should Not Ignore (August 2022).