Treatment of cervical cancer

 
 

Mr Thomas Ind offers expert assessment and treatment of cervical cancer in state-of-the-art private clinics in central London.


Being diagnosed with cervical cancer can be worrying. At this stressful time Mr Thomas Ind and his team offer the very latest treatments and a supportive, stress-free environment in which to recover.

The best treatment for your cancer will depend on the size of the tumour, the severity of the disease and whether there has been any spread of the cancer cells.  Mr Thomas Ind will talk you through your treatment options and take time to address all of your questions and concerns.


Cone biopsy

Cervical cancer that has been caught at an early stage can be removed by cone biopsy, especially if the disease is limited to a small area within the cervix. The surgeon will remove a cone shaped section of cervical tissue, under general anaesthetic. This treatment leaves the womb in place, so that you’re still fertile and able to have children. However, the procedure will slightly increase the chance of miscarriage.


Radical hysterectomy

If the cervical cancer is more extensive or advanced, it’s important to remove the womb. Under general anaesthetic, the surgeon will remove the uterus including the cervix and the top part of the vagina. Mr Ind will also excise some of the surrounding tissues and the ligaments supporting the womb, so that there is less chance of the cancer coming back.

There are always risks with any operation, and complications are more common with this extended procedure than following a simple hysterectomy. Mr Ind and the team work hard to minimise the risk of complications, however some women may have ongoing problems with urinary and bowel functions.


Trachelectomy

If you have cervical cancer and haven’t completed your family, Mr Thomas Ind can perform an operation called a radical trachelectomy to remove the cancer and preserve your fertility. However, there is an increased risk of miscarriage, mid-pregnancy loss and pre-term births after this surgery.

The radical trachelectomy operation involves removing the cervix and the surrounding tissues, but leaving the main body of the uterus behind. This innovative procedure is still new and experimental, therefore results and effects are not fully understood. However, first reports indicate that it is as successful as radical hysterectomy for some types of cervical cancer.


Non-surgical treatment of cervical cancer

When cervical cancer is more advanced, further treatment may be needed to destroy any remaining cancer cells and reduce the risk of recurrence. Depending on the stage of your cancer, a combination of chemotherapy and radiotherapy may be recommended.

Radiotherapy involves targeting the cervix and surrounding tissue with high strength radiation to kill any cancer cells. Chemotherapy involves using a combination of drugs to stop cancer cells form dividing and growing. These two therapies are often used together to increase the success of treatment.

Radiotherapy and chemotherapy both have side-effects that can be serious and long-lasting. The side-effects of radiation to the cervix and genital tract include narrowing of the vagina, changes in bowel habit, and problems passing water. Please contact the clinic if you have any worries about your treatment plan. Mr Thomas Ind and all the staff will do their best to support you and answer any questions you may have.

  • Find out more about complications of cancer treatment at Macmillan

Recovery from cervical cancer

Treatment of cervical cancer can be very effective, especially in expert hands. In the UK, survival rates have increased over the last forty years. We know that most women make a full recovery if the cancer of the cervix is caught quickly and treated effectively. After the disease has spread, it is more difficult to cure the condition and there is an increased risk of the cancer coming back but research shows that overall 63% of women with cervical cancer survive for more than ten years[1].


Recurrence of cervical cancer

If cervical cancer returns after surgery and treatment, it usually indicates that the cancer is more aggressive and a cure is unlikely. This can be very difficult for you and your family. At this sad and stressful time, Mr Thomas Ind and his team will be there to offer support and treatment to manage your symptoms.

Further treatment may be beneficial when cervical cancer recurs. Sometimes surgery to remove the vagina and other structures in the pelvis can help. If the cancer returns at the top of the vagina only, Mr Ind may be able to perform an operation called exenteration. This is an extensive procedure that involves removal of the vagina, bowel and the bladder, however it can cure the cancer in some women.

Mr Ind will talk through the risks of the surgery and the benefits that you may expect in your individual circumstances, so that you have a realistic expectation of what to expect.


Fertility after cervical cancer treatment

Cervical cancer can affect the young, with those between 25 and 45 years being at increased risk. This means that many women will not have completed their families when they are diagnosed with the disease. When you are already devastated by finding out you have cancer, worrying about fertility can increase the fear, sadness and sense of loss.


Can I have a baby after cervical cancer treatment?

The impact of cervical cancer on fertility will depend on the stage of the cancer, the severity of the disease and the treatment used to remove the cancer cells.

Women with early, localised cancers may be treated with cone biopsy. With this surgery, the womb is preserved so that fertility is maintained, although a woman who has undergone this procedure is at increased risk of miscarriage during future pregnancies.

Women with more advanced cancers may need a radical hysterectomy to cure their disease, in which case future pregnancies are sadly impossible. However, for some women with more extensive cervical cancer, Mr Ind may be able to perform a new procedure called a radical trachelectomy. The cancer and the cervix are removed but the body of the womb is preserved. This means that pregnancy is possible in the future, although there is a risk of miscarriage and premature births after this type of surgery.

Find out more:

[1] http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/cervical-cancer#heading-Zero