Gynaecological cancers occur when abnormal cells develop in the female reproductive system.
What are the different types of gynaecological cancer?
Gynaecological cancers are named according to the organ or part of the body where they first develop, including ovary, uterus, cervix, vagina and vulva.
Ovarian cancer affects the ovaries, a pair of solid, oval-shaped organs producing hormones and eggs (ova).
Uterine cancer begins in the main body of the uterus, a hollow organ about the size and shape of an upside-down pear. The uterus is where the baby grows when a woman is pregnant.
Cervical cancer begins in the cervix, the lower, cylinder-shaped part of the uterus. The cervix’s upper margin is connected to the uterus, while its lower margin is connected to the vagina.
Vaginal cancer begins in the vagina (also called the birth canal), a muscular tube-like channel that extends from the cervix to the external part of the female sex organs (vulva).
Vulval cancer begins in the vulva, the outer part of the female reproductive system. It includes the opening of the vagina, the inner and outer lips (also called labia minora and labia majora), the clitoris and the mons pubis (soft, fatty mound of tissue, above the labia).
Other types of gynaecological cancers can include fallopian tube cancer and placenta cancer (a pregnancy-related cancer).