The answer is yes and no. Cervical cancer can be detected early on when pre cancerous changes start forming on the cervical lining. Undergoing a Pap test will help you detect these cancerous changes and treat them adequately without going into the intricacies of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. This will help the woman retain her fertility and prevent the need for fertility treatment for becoming pregnant.
Advanced stages of cervical cancer will have to be treated with radiation and chemotherapy and sometimes surgery like hysterectomy will be required where the uterus is removed. At times the entire vaginal canal as well as the ovaries and fallopian tubes too will be removed for preventing recurrence. In such cases, pregnancy is impossible unless you have preserved your eggs or want to go in for surrogacy.
Pregnancy After Stage 0 And Stage I
For stage 0 and stage 1 of cervical cancer, the treatment methods are very mild and this is more than sufficient for killing the abnormal cells in the cervix. The common treatment methods undertaken are cryosurgery, laser treatment and sometimes hysterectomy. All the treatment methods except hysterectomy which is done mostly as a preventive method will help in retaining the fertility of the woman, helping her become pregnant after the procedure.
Pregnancy After Stage II
When the cervical cancer progresses to stage 2, the treatment method adopted for the fist stage may not be effective. Here the conization procedure is adopted. Conization is a form of biopsy where a cone shaped tissue is removed from the cervix. There are several ways by which this is done. A laser knife can be used for cutting the cone shaped tissue.
Sometimes an electrically charged wire too is used for this purpose. By this method, the surface layer of cancer cells is successfully eliminated. Conization helps in preserving the fertility of the woman as there is no radiation or chemotherapy exposure. But the cervix might become a little weak with the procedure and careful observation is necessary at the time of pregnancy.
Pregnancy After Stage III
Stage III poses a great problem for young women as there are chances of them getting sterile due to the radiation and chemotherapy. You might require infertility treatment in order to become pregnant after radiation treatment as radiation can damage the ovaries. If the cancer is much advanced at stage III, along with these treatments, hysterectomy too would be recommended by the doctor which is the removal or uterus. Once the hysterectomy procedure is done, a woman cannot bear a child as the uterus is absent.
Pregnancy After Stage IV
Stage IV is the last stage of cervical cancer where the cancer has metastasised to other parts of the body. This stage is difficult to cure and only the life expectancy can be increased with radiation therapy and surgical removal of the uterus and other reproductive organs. There is no question of a woman getting pregnant at this stage as the care offered is only palliative and life expectancy of people at stage IV is only 30%