Gynecologic cancer is any cancer that starts in a woman’s reproductive organs.

While they are often discussed as a group, each gynecologic cancer is unique. Each has different signs, symptoms, and risk factors.

The five main types of gynecologic cancer are:

  • Cervical cancer: Begins in the cervix, the lower part of the uterus (or womb).
  • Ovarian cancer: Begins in the ovaries, located on each side of the uterus.
  • Uterine cancer: Begins in the uterus, the pear-shaped organ in a woman’s pelvis where the baby grows when a woman is pregnant.
  • Vaginal cancer: Begins in the vagina, the hollow, tube-like channel between the bottom of the uterus and the outside of the body. It is also called the birth canal.
  • Vulvar cancer: Begins in the vulva, the outer part of the female genital organs, which includes the inner and outer lips of the vagina, the clitoris, and the opening of the vagina and its glands.

While all women are at risk for gynecologic cancer, this risk generally increases with age.

There is no way to know which women will get gynecologic cancer. Each specific type of gynecologic cancer has a unique set of risk factors. These are discussed in detail for each cancer on the pages that follow.

  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) infections that do not go away increase the risk of getting several types of gynecologic cancers. HPV is a common sexually transmitted virus that can cause cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers. It is one of the most well-established risk factors for these three cancers.
  • Significant Family history of malignancy in family

While there is no known way to prevent all types of gynecologic cancer, there are things you can do that may help lower your chance of getting them or help to find them early. It is important to find gynecologic cancers early, when treatment can be most effective.

  • Pay attention to your body and know what is normal for you. If you have any abnormal vaginal bleeding, or if you have any other signs and symptoms of gynecologic cancer for two weeks or longer and they are not normal for you, talk to a doctor right away. The symptoms may be caused by something other than cancer, but the only way to know is to see a doctor.
  • Make healthy lifestyle choices. For overall good health, eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables; exercise regularly; maintain a healthy weight; avoid smoking; and practice safe sex.
  • Know your family health history. Share it with your doctor.
  • Get the HPV vaccine, if you are at an age when it is recommended. It protects against the types of HPV that most often cause cervical, vaginal, and vulvar cancers. Gynaecologist or gynaeoncologists to be consulted for administration & scheduling.The vaccine is recommended for 11- and 12-year-old girls.
  • Get regular Pap testsPap tests (or Pap smears) are one of the most reliable and effective cancer screening tests available. Pap tests can find precancerous changes on the cervix that can be treated so that cervical cancer is prevented. A Pap test can also find cervical cancer early, when treatment is most effective. The only cancer the Pap test screens for is cervical cancer.

Pap screening to be done even if HPV vaccine has been taken.Gynaecologist to be consulted for recommendations of  pap testing.

The Pap test does NOT screen for ovarian, uterine, vaginal, or vulvar cancers. Even if you have a Pap test regularly, see your doctor if you notice any signs or symptoms that are not normal for you.

The signs and symptoms shown here are often related to gynecologic cancer. However, not all women with gynecologic cancer have the same symptoms.

If your doctor says you have a gynecologic cancer, you may feel scared, depressed, shocked, worried, angry, confused, and many other emotions. Everyone reacts differently to a cancer diagnosis. There is no one ‘right’ way to react.

As you come to terms emotionally with the diagnosis, here are some practical things you can do as you, your loved ones, and doctor decide on the best medical course of action:

Ask to be referred to a gynecologic oncologist, a doctor who is trained to treat gynecologic cancers.

Cancer staging describes the size and extent of the disease in the body and

whether it has spread from its original site to other parts of the body.

To find out the stage of a gynecologic cancer, your doctor may perform several tests. These results:

  • Will help the doctor develop the best possible treatment plan.
  • Can be used to estimate the likely outcome or course of the disease.

Different types and combinations of cancer treatment are possible, depending on the type of cancer and the stage at which it is diagnosed. Possible treatments include:

  • Surgery: A surgeon removes as much of the cancer as possible. The extent or possibility of surgery depends on the type of cancer, the stage, and the patient’s overall health.
  • Chemotherapy: A doctor uses drugs to stop or slow the growth of cancer cells. These drugs also can harm healthy cells, which may cause side effects. Side effects usually get better or go away when chemotherapy is over.
  • Radiation Therapy: A doctor uses high doses of radiation—high-energy rays—to kill cancer cells and stop them from spreading. Radiation therapy does not hurt while it is being given, but it can cause side effects.

Be aware of prevention, screening, early signs & symptoms of cancer. Report all significant changes noticed in your body to the doctor.

Accept the disease and get it treated, early detection & treatment may lead upto 90% cure rates in certain cancers


Bone Marrow Transplantation or BMT is typically a medical procedure done to introduce healthy bone marrow cells as a replacement to the damaged bone marrow. Bone marrow is a soft spongy tissue inside the bone. The new blood cells are formed from certain immature cells existing inside the bone marrow and these immature cells are known as stem cells.

Blood cancer (Leukaemia, Lymphoma)

Myelodysplastic syndrome

Anaemia-Thalassemia, Sickle Cell Disease, other Haemoglobinopathies, Iron deficiency or Megaloblastic anaemia, Haemolytic anaemia

Bone marrow failure syndromes (Aplastic anaemia, Fanconi’s anaemia, Pure red cell aplasia)

Bleeding disorders (Haemophilia, ITP, Platelet function defects including von Willebrand disease)

Clotting disorder (Deep vein thrombosis)

Miscellaneous – Hemochromatosis, Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis, Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome, Langerhan cell histiocytosis

The types of transplants are:

Autologous Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation

This transplantation procedure involves using a patient’s own stem cells. Indications: Lymphoma, Neuroblastoma, Brain Tumors


Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem cell Transplantation

Stem cells are taken from another person, called a donor.

Indications: Thalassemia, Sickle cell anaemia. Aplastic anaemia, Fanconi anaemia, Pure red cell aplasia, Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), Acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), Chronic myeloid leukaemia CML, MDS

Haploidentical Bone Marrow Transplantation

This procedure is done when the donor and recipients do not have full match. This can be done by collecting stem cells from mother, father or brothers and sisters.

Matched Unrelated Donor (MUD) BMT: This procedure is performed if we get HLA match from international or national bone marrow donor registries.

Cord Blood Stem Cell Transplantation

In this case, stem cells are removed from a new-born baby’s umbilical cord immediately after birth. The stem cells are stored until they are needed for a transplant.

In this case, stem cells are removed from a new-born baby’s umbilical cord immediately after birth. The stem cells are stored until they are needed for a transplant.

Is Surgery Required?

  1. Bone Marrow Transplantation is a medical procedure. Rarely, when donor is very small then stem cells are collected by bone marrow aspirations. Mostly, stem cells are collected via peripheral vein and the whole procedure is like donating blood or platelets.

Is there any risk to Donor

With modern day techniques, risk to donor is nearly absent. They may get fever and or body pain for 1 day or so which is managed with paracetamol tablet alone. The donor need not be admitted, does not require anaesthesia.

Procedure of Bone Marrow transplantation: Usually patient is given few medicines to control the disease. After that stem cells are given via vein. No surgery is required. There is about 1-2 week observation time after this as this is the time required for stem cells to start to function. During this time patient is given certain medicines to prevent infection. Patients also need blood and platelet transfusions during this phase.

Generally patients are admitted for 3 weeks in autologous transplantation. In case of allogeneic bone marrow transplantation, hospital admission is required for about 4 weeks. Patients are then discharged some oral medications to prevent infections and GVHD. Patients need to stay closer to BMT center for about 3-6 months for follow-up after BMT. Most patients are taken off all medicines by 6 months to 1 year.

Treatment Protocols- At Max Healthcare, we follow internationally accepted protocols and guidelines for management of various disorders.