WHAT ARE GYNAECOLOGICAL CANCERS?
Gynaecological cancers are cancers of the female reproductive system.
There are seven types: ovarian (fallopian tube), uterine (endometrial or womb), cervical, vulval, vaginal, and two, rare pregnancy-related cancers.
Though they aren’t talked about much in the community, gynaecological cancers are the third most commonly diagnosed cancer types for women.
Gynaecological cancers can be difficult to diagnose and only cervical cancer has a screening test; the cervical screening test (formally the Pap Test).
Gynaecological cancers are the 3rd most common cancers in women
While symptoms of gynaecological cancer can be hard to pin down, there are some warning signs you should be aware of. Listen to your body for anything that seems out of the ordinary.
What to look for:
- abnormal or persistent vaginal bleeding
- unusual vaginal discharge
- pain, pressure or discomfort in the abdomen
- swelling of the abdomen
- change in bowel or bladder habits
- pain during sex
- vaginal itching, burning or soreness
- lumps, sores or wart-like growths
It’s important to know that having these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have a gynaecological cancer. However if they persist, make sure you see your doctor and have a thorough check-up, or request a referral to a gynaecological oncologist. If you are not comfortable with your doctor’s diagnosis or you are still concerned, seek a second opinion to be sure.
BE EMPOWERED. KNOW YOUR BODY, UNDERSTAND THE SYMPTOMS OF GYNAECOLOGICAL CANCER AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR HEALTH.
WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES FOR TREATING GYNAECOLOGICAL CANCERS?
Uterine (endometrial) cancer is one of the five most commonly diagnosed cancers in women. Uterine cancer incidence has increased by 55% over the last 10 years, mainly due to the rise in obesity.
Ovarian cancer symptoms can be vague and non-specific and therefore hard to recognise. Early diagnosis is vital to achieve best treatment outcomes for ovarian cancer and increase survival.
Cervical cancer has both a screening test and the HPV vaccine which is making a significant difference in incidence for younger women. Older women, migrant, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and remote populations are less likely to access services and have a higher risk of cervical cancer.
While there is a routine screening test for cervical cancer, there are no routine screening tests for the other types of gynaecological cancers. This means they can go undetected until symptoms present.
CHANGE COMES FROM UNDERSTANDING AND ACTION
WHAT IS ANZGOG?
Australia New Zealand Gynaecological Oncology Group is the peak national gynaecological cancer research group in Australia and New Zealand. For 20 years, we have conducted world-leading clinical trials research.
ANZGOG's mission is to improve life for women with ovarian and other gynaecological cancers through research, cooperative clinical trials, information and awareness. ANZGOG’s research has changed clinical practice both locally and globally.
ANZGOG's membership is made up of more than
medical, nursing and health specialists
hospitals, universities and research institutions
in Australia and New Zealand
Since the year 2000, we have led more than
clinical trial projects
with volunteer participation from more than 3,000 women.
RESEARCH IS KEY
Today around 18 Australian women will learn they have a gynaecological cancer. Pioneering new discoveries are needed to improve women’s lives. Save the Box is funding cancer research conducted by ANZGOG, the peak national gynaecological cancer research group for Australia and New Zealand.