What is cervical cancer?
Cancer of the cervix is cancer of the cells lining your cervix. At first abnormal (precancerous) changes occur. These abnormal cells are called cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). These cells are not cancerous but if left untreated may develop into cancer.
Cancer is when the abnormal cells in the cervix form a tumour. These cells may then spread to other areas.
About 300 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year in Ireland.
What is the cervix and what does it do?
The cervix is found deep inside your vagina at the lower end of your womb (uterus). It is often called the neck of the womb as it is the opening to the womb from the vagina. It is shaped like a cylinder or tube.
Usually your cervix is closed but opens during labour to let the baby be born.
The cells in your cervix are changing all the time. Most changes happen in an area called the transformation zone. Sometimes abnormal changes happen.
We use the term ‘woman / women’ in our cervical cancer information but we understand that not everyone who has a cervix identifies as a woman.
It doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from, we are here for you.
This is GO
For more information on cervical cancer, you can also look at This is GO, which gives tailored information for people worried about cervical cancer, people diagnosed with cervical cancer and for friends and relatives. This is GO is part of the Women's Health Initiative, a research project supported by the Irish Cancer Society.
Online Community Support: Cervical cancer
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