Cervical cancer suspicions but no diagnosis yet

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Hi all, I don't know if I have posted in this group already but I am a 26yo female, I am yet to have any smear tests as I just hadn't got round to it due to a busy life schedule (I know I should make time for it). Around 10 days ago, I experienced sudden pelvic discomfort/swelling and swelling, nausea, fatigue and just feeling genuinely unwell. I went to see gynae on Friday, they done an internal ultrasound which ruled out ovarian cancer but upon a speculum test, I experienced a lot of pain and the consultant had to remove it, he has referred me for an mri to see what's going on. I am feeling so unwell and struggling to do my daily activities without getting exhausted and sleeping. Just wanted to see if anyone has had similar symptoms to me who has been diagnosed or see if it could be something less serious than cervical cancer. I have unintentionally lost around a stone in the last 9 months or so and have now suddenly got an alcohol intolerance which I always used to enjoy a glass of wine here and there! I can't help but worry and google things! 

thankyou x

  • Hi again  

    Yes, you did post on an older thread, which I have replied to-if you can’t find it, click on your name and you’ll be able to see all of your recent activity in the community. The forum takes a little bit of getting used to at the start! 

    Thanks for making a post in the “say hello” section as it makes it easier to see it straight off. 

    I think it’s quite possible that people have had similar symptoms and been diagnosed with cervical cancer, but equally possible that women have had these symptoms and not been diagnosed with cancer.  Unfortunately in a group like this, you’re going to come across people who have had a diagnosis and are looking for some support, so it’s not so likely they’ve had a diagnosis of something else.

    I notice that you’ve been looking at dr Google, and I’d really like to recommend not to do that. It cannot diagnose you, and is more likely to increase your worry with worst case scenarios which will usual “tell you” you have cancer. At the moment that’s a possibility but not a certainty. 

    The mri will let the consultant see if there’s anything of concern in your pelvic area, but the way cancer is typically diagnosed is by taking a biopsy of any suspicious lumps or lesions(collections of abnormal looking cells). A biopsy would typically be the next step if anything odd is found on the mri. I notice you had difficulty in having a speculum inserted, so in cases where this is difficult you may need to have a biopsy under anaesthetic. This is not unusual.

    Just in case you don’t have any experience of having an mri, they are very noisy! There are a lot of “thumps” from underneath as the pictures are taken. I would recommend using an eye mask if you feel claustrophobic at all, but I’ve never had my whole body in the machine-my head and shoulders have been outside and I’ve gone in feet first. You have headphones on so that any instructions can be given, like when to breathe in, and they have had the radio played through them when I’ve had my scans. 

    I understand how worrying it is to have these symptoms, so I hope you don’t have too long to wait for the mri. Do you know if you have been referred on the 2 week wait? You’ll find there is a lot of waiting on the road to getting any diagnosis, and that can be the most difficult part of the process. You would need to wait for the results of the mri for example-you won’t be told anything on the day.

    As I said in my last reply, please let us know how you get on, and there will be support here if you do receive a cancer diagnosis.

    Sarah xx


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  • Hi SarahH21, Thankyou for your response, it is much appreciated, yes I agree, google can't diagnose you and only makes things worse, I just wanted to try and find some comfort that my symptoms aren't cancer but like you say, google shows all the worse things! I am not sure about the mri, he didn't say how long but I'm hoping because of my symptoms, that it won't take too long, if I don't hear by Friday, I'll ring the mri department and see if they have received the referral. I am hoping it is just a cyst or fybroid or something else gynae related, i just feel so weak and genuinely unwell, but I'll just have to be patient and stay as positive as I can! X

  • It’s very difficult to be patient, I understand that. I’ve got used to waiting for tests and results over the last few years but it doesn’t make it any easier! 

    It’s very natural to be worried, and don’t put pressure on yourself to feel positive all of the time. That’s just not possible-we’re only human and worry about lots of things in life, not just the potential of cancer. Have you got a good support network round you of family/friends? It can help to be able to talk through your concerns and do ask for help if you need it since you’re feeling weak and unwell, 

    I hope it’s something less serious than cancer, especially at your age-you’re very young to be going through a health concern like this, so I do feel for you. Keep posting whenever you’d like to and if we can help we will. 

    Sarah xx


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  • It sure is! I have major health anxiety anyway and always expect the worse so something like this happening is hurrendous! Yeah I've got a great partner, friends and support from my parents which is nice! They're all staying positive which helps me sometimes but I do also feel alone as only I know how I'm feeling and I know my body when something feels off! Yeah exactly! Very young to have something like this! I had a 20cm cyst when I was 14 and that had to be tested for cancer because of its size but thank god it was benign! The one thing I wish I done was stay on top of my smear tests, I turned 26 in may and still are yet to have one done! I'm on the implant so my periods are all over the place but the last 2 times I had it booked, I started bleeding so had to cancel :(. Got to stay positive and hope this is just a bump in the road! My 28 yo partner has just got over sepsis which was so unexpected, so we need a bit of good news! Xx

  • Please don’t beat yourself about not having gone for a smear test-they are not a test for cancer but initially just for the hpv virus. Further testing is only done if you test positive for hpv, and then they will look for abnormal cells.

    My particularl type of cervical cancer (adenocarcinoma) is often not picked up on a smear as it starts high up in the cervical canal and the smear can miss any sign of it.  Also, although most cervical cancer is caused by hpv, not all is, so the smear test is not a fail safe way of diagnosing it.

    I would always encourage women to look out for symptoms, but you have done this and by the sound of it acted quickly in getting a doctor’s appointment. That’s the main thing-and now you are being investigated promptly. 

    Do you have any help for your health anxiety? If not, it might be a good idea to try to get some. I have not suffered from health anxiety but general anxiety in the past and found both self help techniques and medication from my gp greatly helped get me through it. Might be something to think about. 

    I hope your partner is recovering now-gosh, you’ve had a lot on your plate to deal with! 

    Sarah xx


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  • Aw bless you! What made you initially go to the doctors then if it cannot be picked up on a smear test? 

    Yeah I left it a few days but I knew something was wrong as I looked 6 months pregnant and had other symptoms and it's been like that ever since! I eventually took myself to a&e, the doctor examined me and said he he felt a mass and he was going to refer me to the cancer clinic and for an ultrasound. But when I went up a few days later, another doctor said he couldn't feel a mass but that I had to wait for the referral and luckily a few days later I received an appointment. I just knew something was different as it all came on suddenly but thinking about my symptoms, I think there's been things in the last month that I have dismissed as I still felt fine and had no symptoms, up until 10 days ago! 

    yeah I am on anxiety and anti depressant tablets anyway, they're only a low dose but I have considered having them increased, meditation helps me a lot, I just haven't been able to focus since all of this has happened. 

    he is much better now Thankyou! It was touch and go at one point but luckily he received the right care and his age was on his side too! Xx

  • I went to the doctor because of my symptoms-I was post menopausal and had some heavy bleeding and a lot of pelvic pain. So I knew there was something wrong but didn’t actually think it would be cancer! Turned out I had a visible tumour I didn’t know was there. But I don’t spend time looking back and wishing things had been different. I just had to get on with it-but it was a shock!

    I’m glad you’ve got meds for your anxiety-I was just on a low dose too but it definitely took the edge off things for me. I took them for about a year an a half while I got through my treatments and surgeries but stopped more than 3 years ago and haven’t gone back to them. And good to hear your partner is doing well-sepsis is a really scary thing to go through. 

    Sarah xx


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  • Aw bless you, that must've been scary to receive the diagnosis, like you said, you never expect it to happen to you do you! 

    yes it was very scary, so glad he is healthy and still with us! 

    I am having to chase up the mri appointment as I am now struggling and getting fed up! My partner told me last night that the doctor said he has done a 2 week referral for the mri which I didn't realise, going to ring them today to see if they have received the referral. Need to be seen sooner rather than later, I feel so sick and just fed up.

  • No harm in giving them a ring to see if the referral has been made, but things in general are taking longer than normal in the nhs right now. 

    We expect things to happen very quickly if there’s a suspicion of cancer, but unfortunately that’s often not the case even with a 2 week referral-I’ve seen that with my father in law currently who has been diagnosed but months later is still waiting for any treatment.

    It’s horrible to be feeling ill and just waiting. If the referral has been received and you’re in a position to be seen at very short notice, you could ask if they have a cancellation list and say you are prepared to accept any appointment. Might not be possible but worth a try. 

    Sarah xx


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  • Hi, yeah I called mri this morning, they received the referral on Friday when I see the consultant, she said I should be expecting a call this week for an appointment so that's good that it's been pushed through nice and quick! If they didn't have the referral yet, I would've asked to be put on the cancellation list.

    oh bless him! Yeah it's a nightmare! I'm in Kent and the nhs here is hurrendous so I am lucky to have had this pushed through so fast! I feel so weak, trying to eat still and get some sugar in me but it's hard when I don't have much of an appetite or get full up quick xx