Possible cervical cancer, endometriosis and more.

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Hi everyone.

I’m Lizzie, 26 and feeling very overwhelmed.

My mum is beginning treatment this week for an advanced bladder cancer, and following a long while of increasingly painful pelvic cramps/ needing to wee constantly I’m now on my own journey. 

I went to my GP - who was unsure about the appearance of my cervix, it looked inflamed and red. I saw a nurse specialist this week who performed both a smear and a punch biopsy. I’ve never had a smear so as you can imagine I am fearing for the worst right now.

The nurse couldn’t see anything too alarming, however she could see a red patch which she suspects is HPV, is it common to have HPV causing red patches without it being harmful or developing into cancer?

My main concern is how much pain I’m in on a daily basis, the nurse doesn’t seem to think my cervix is causing this pain and that it may be coming from my uterus or another organic around the pelvis. I’m on a waiting game for more scans of my abdomen but I’m feeling myself spiralling into panic watching my mum go through her own battle. I’m really scared, confused and unsure as to why I’m in so much pain but I feel they’re missing something and that the cervical issue might be incidental findings. 

if anybody has any experience or advice on this; I’d be so grateful. 

  • Hi   and welcome to our group.

    You’ve got a lot going on right now, and I can understand why you are so anxious. It must be very difficult seeing your mum be diagnosed with bladder cancer and beginning treatment while you have your own worries to deal with at the same time. 

    It’s very common to have the hpv virus without it ever causing any issues, much less develop into cancer, and it’s also common to have something called cervical ectropion which is where the cells from further up the cervix grow on the outside of the cervix and can look like a red patch. It is completely harmless and not connected to cancer, but the nurse is just being thorough in doing her checks and taking a biopsy to make sure that the patch is nothing of concern. Ectropion, if this is what it is, should not cause pain, so you would need further tests to see what is causing your pain.

    None of us in the group are medical professionals, just patients or carers dealing with cervical cancer, so we couldn’t speculate on what the pain could mean, but you mentioned having abdominal scans, so hopefully this would give enough information to give you a diagnosis.  You mentioned endometriosis-has this been diagnosed yet, or has it just been suggested that this might be causing your pain? 

    You haven’t mentioned some of the common symptoms associated with cervical cancer-for example unexplained bleeding, or pain after sex, and abdominal scans are not used in the diagnosis of cervical cancer so maybe this is something you have become concerned with due to the red patch rather than something the nurse has suggested might be a possibility? 

    I cannot tell you not to worry, as it’s inevitable you will until you get more information, but I would gently suggest that you try not to let thoughts of cervical cancer take hold in your mind and just try to sit tight and wait for your scan. If you are in daily pain, have you sought any help with this? It can really wear you down having constant pain, and make things in your mind seem much worse.

    You may find it helpful for yourself and your mum to take a look at (and join if you wish) the bladder cancer group in the community.

    Bladder Cancer Forum

    We also have a family and friends group where you can connect with others dealing with a family member’s cancer.

    Bladder cancer can be very treatable, and there are lots of lovely and supportive people in the bladder group who could offer you support and advice. If you want to post there, and say what kind of treatment your mum is having, I’m sure that people will be happy to share their experiences and help you. 

    It really must all seem very overwhelming for you at the moment, and you are very young to be coping with so much, but you are very welcome to post here  in the group and share your fears and worries. There will always be a listening ear! And it would be good to hear how you get on with further tests. Hopefully you will not get a cancer diagnosis and something less serious will be found, but you will always find support in the community.

    Sarah xx

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    Cervical Cancer Forum

    Macmillan Support Line - 0808 808 00 00, 7 days a week between 8am-8pm

  • This is the link to the family and friends forum-my internet is playing up tonight!

    Family and Friends Forum

    Sarah xx

    Community Champion Badge

    Cervical Cancer Forum

    Macmillan Support Line - 0808 808 00 00, 7 days a week between 8am-8pm