Gynecologic Cancer Awareness

All women are at risk for gynecologic cancers. Learn how to lower your risk.

Gynecologic cancers are cancers of women’s reproductive organs. The five main types are cervical, ovarian, uterine, vaginal, and vulvar cancer.

What Are the Symptoms?

These could be symptoms of a gynecologic cancer—

  • Pelvic pain or pressure that doesn’t go away, and you don’t know why.
  • Feeling too full, too fast, even when you eat just a little.
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding, like having longer or heavier periods than what’s normal for you, or bleeding after you’ve gone through menopause.

If you notice anything unusual and it goes on for two weeks or longer, see a doctor. It may be nothing, but find out for sure.

Which Gynecologic Cancers Can Be Prevented?

You can lower your risk for some gynecologic cancers with a vaccine and screening tests.

HPV Vaccine

Some gynecologic cancers are caused by human papillomavirus (HPV), a common virus.

The HPV vaccine can help prevent cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers. Learn more about the HPV vaccine.

Cervical Cancer Screening Tests

Cervical cancer is the only gynecologic cancer that has recommended screening tests. Two screening tests can help prevent cervical cancer or find it early—

  • The Pap test (or Pap smear) looks for precancers, cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated appropriately.
  • The HPV test looks for the virus that can cause these cell changes.
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