The most common types of cervical carcinomas are squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. In the majority of cases (70 percent or more), the malignant cells are classified as squamous cell carcinomas. In the cervix, they line the outer surface. Normal squamous cells have a thin and flat appearance. It is worth noting that cancerous cells can have an abnormal appearance. Their unchecked proliferation also results in an abnormal accumulation of mutations.
In about 10 to 20 percent of cases, the cells are classified as adenocarcinomas. This type of carcinoma affects mucus-producing cells. In the cervix, they line the cervical canal. These cells are normally column-shaped. There are other types of cervical carcinomas, but these two make up the majority of cervical cancer cases.