Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Signs and symptoms

What are the symptoms of cervical cancer?

Symptoms of cervical cancer usually do not appear until the tumor becomes large or spreads into nearby tissues.

  • The most common symptom is abnormal bleeding, which may:
    • Start and stop between regular menstrual periods.
    • Occur after sexual intercourse, douching or a pelvic exam.
  • Other symptoms may include:
    • Heavier menstrual bleeding, which may last longer than usual.
    • Bleeding after menopause.
    • Increased vaginal discharge.
    • Pain during intercourse.
    • Foul-smelling vaginal discharge.
    • Pelvic pain.
    • Leg swelling or pain.

The symptoms of cervical cancer may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Consult a physician for diagnosis.