This is about cervical cancer treatment and your sex life

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Many women feel nervous about having sex soon after treatment for cancer, but it is perfectly safe. Sex will not make the cancer come back and your partner can not catch cancer from you.

Often, women feel they need to take more time on sex to help relax the vagina. It may also be easier if your partner is gentle at first so that the vagina can stretch slowly. Regular gentle sex will help the vagina becomes more flexible and you should be able to return to your normal sex life, a few weeks after radiotherapy.

If sex is difficult, you and your partner may find it helps to talk with one of your treatment team. Although it may feel awkward at first, it can really help to talk things through.

Your doctor or nurse must have experience in this area and can advise you on what might help you. You can also talk to our specialist cancer support |.

Our section on sexuality and cancer | has more information and guidance.

Early Menopause

You may find that your treatment makes an early menopause. The symptoms are not different from those of natural menopause, but may be more intense if it occurs suddenly. If you want, there is no reason why you should not take HRT if your treatment causes early menopause.
Other effects of radiotherapy

Radiation therapy for cancer of the cervix can cause some side effects. These are fibrosis and narrowing of the vagina, vaginal dryness, pain during intercourse, and the delicate skin inside the vagina.

the widespread fears about sex and cancer

You may feel nervous about having sex after being diagnosed with cancer of the cervix, or have had treatment. If you wish, you can resume your normal sexual activity after several weeks of radiation therapy or surgery finish. It is perfectly safe once your body has healed. Your partner can not catch cancer from you.

If you're still worried, anxious or depressed, you're not likely to want sex. Talk things over with your partner. Together, you should be able to work on what is best for you both.

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