At MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper, our mission is to eliminate cervical cancer by providing the New Jersey and Philadelphia region with advanced, state-of-the-art, and comprehensive treatment approaches. Our partnership with MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston – one of the nation’s leading cancer programs, gives our patients access to the same cancer treatment plans delivered at MD Anderson, as well as access to the latest generation of diagnostic and treatment technologies and select clinical trials.
Cervical cancer often originates in an area referred to as the transformation zone, a space of the cervix between the uterus and vagina. Strains of human papillomavirus (HPV) are known to cause cervical cancer, and in most cases, there are usually no related symptoms. There are currently many treatment options available, from surgery to different types of radiation therapy. MD Anderson at Cooper has been a regional leader of cervical cancer care for decades. Our Division of Gynecologic Oncology includes four board-certified gynecologic oncologists, two nurse practitioners, three clinical practice nurses, and a nurse navigator – all of whom are specially trained and focus exclusively on caring for patients with gynecologic cancers.
MD Anderson at Cooper is a founding member of NRG Oncology, a research group that is part of the National Cancer Institute’s National Clinical Trials Network. Membership in the NRG Oncology places MD Anderson at Cooper at the forefront of gynecologic cancer research, ensuring that our patients have access to advanced treatment options and the latest clinical trials.
There are more than 100,000 patient visits each year at MD Anderson at Cooper, and our comprehensive Gynecologic Cancer Center is one of the largest in the region. Our expertise and commitment to patient care led the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer to accredit MD Anderson at Cooper as an Academic Comprehensive Cancer Program – a recognition given to a select few cancer centers in the nation.
Why Choose MD Anderson at Cooper for Cervical Cancer Care
As a partner with MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, one of the nation's leading cancer centers, MD Anderson at Cooper offers cervical cancer treatment expertise. You’ll benefit from our:
Cancer care expertise
Our doctors are experts in cervical cancer diagnosis and treatment. At our center, you have access to a broad range of innovative treatment options and the most up-to-date therapies.
Cooper’s Division of Gynecologic Oncology includes four subspecialty board certified gynecologic oncologists with more than 60 years of combined experience treating gynecologic cancers and precancers. Our experts are supported by a subspecialty trained gynecologic pathologist and radiation oncologist, as well as a full array of nursing support including two nurse practitioners, three clinical practice nurses, and a nurse navigator who focus exclusively on gynecologic cancers.
Our expert surgeons, skilled clinicians, and researchers are at the forefront of advanced cancer care and the latest treatment approaches – including minimally invasive surgery and robotic-assisted surgery – while training the next generation of gynecologic oncologists.
Team approach to treatment
At MD Anderson at Cooper, doctors from a variety of cancer specialties work together on your care. Gynecologic oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, and other specialists meet weekly to collaborate on your treatment. This cohesion ensures you receive the most effective regimen for your specific circumstances
Thought leadership and expertise
Our cervical cancer specialists are recognized experts in their field, advancing thought leadership as well as state-of-the art patient care and research. David P. Warshal, Director of MD Anderson at Cooper’s Gynecologic Cancer Center is a key member of the Cervical Cancer Taskforce that is drafting New Jersey’s cervical cancer prevention guidelines. Our specialists, frequently recognized as “Top Doctors” in the region, are advancing the latest treatment approaches and clinical studies, including radical trachelectomies to allow for the possibility of successful pregnancies and a study on the effect of trichloroacetic acid to treat precancerous changes on the cervix.
And our unique partnership with MD Anderson in Houston allows us to draw upon studies and treatment approaches that lead the worldwide standard of care for patients with cervical cancer.
Clinical research efforts
As a member of NRG Oncology, part of the National Cancer Institute’s National Clinical Trials Network, we provide patients with access to innovative gynecologic cancer clinical trials, such as new chemotherapy combinations.
Dedicated nurse navigator
Our gynecologic oncology nurse navigator serves as your advocate and helps educate you about your diagnosis and treatment. She also helps you schedule appointments so you can focus on your health.
Full range of support services
A cancer diagnosis can impact many aspects of your life. With this in mind, we offer a wide range of supportive care resources, including nutrition counseling, behavioral medicine, and complementary medicine therapies.
Most advanced techniques
The gynecologic cancer team use the latest and most-advanced equipment for treating cervical cancer, including the Da Vinci Robotic Surgical System, a minimally invasive, surgeon-controlled system.
Tests to Diagnose Cervical Cancer
If you have symptoms, risk factors, or Pap test results that show precancerous cells or cancer, your doctor will suggest other procedures to make a diagnosis. In order to examine the cells of the cervix more closely, the doctor may perform a colposcopy. A colposcopy is a medical procedure to closely examine the cervix, vaginal, and vulva using a colposcope. Another common test is a biopsy where the doctor takes a sample of cervical cells for further examination.
If the biopsy indicates cervical cancer, you will be referred to a gynecologic oncologist, a doctor who specializes in treating cervical cancer. The specialist may suggest other tests to see if the cancer has spread beyond the cervix.
Testing may include:
- Colposcopy: a diagnostic test used to evaluate an area of abnormal tissue on the cervix, vagina or vulva using an instrument called a colposcope that magnifies tissue so a health care practitioner can see abnormalities that cannot be seen with the naked eye.
- Biopsy: a procedure in which your doctor removes a small amount of tissue for examination under a microscope to look for precancerous or cancerous cells.
- Pelvic Examination: A pelvic examination is part of every gynecologic visit and should be done regularly. A pelvic exam includes a rectal exam.
- Cystoscopy and Proctoscopy: If advanced cancer is diagnosed and your doctor suspects it may have spread beyond the cervix, a cystoscopy or proctoscopy may be done using a lighted tube to view the inside of the bladder (cystoscopy) or the anus, rectum, and lower colon (proctoscopy).