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Female service members stand on the flightline for Women's History Month at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, March 19, 2021. The service members participated in the Air Force's two-week advanced aerial combat training exercise, Red Flag. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Natalie Rubenak)
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Uterine Cancer

Uterine Cancer is a type of pelvic cancer. Uterine cancer affects the structures and organs in the pelvis. The pelvic area is the lower portion of the trunk of a genetic female body. The pelvis contains the:

  • Pelvic bones
  • Bladder
  • Rectum
  • Reproductive organs

Uterine cancers can be either:

  • Endometrial cancer (common) or
  • Uterine sarcoma (rare)

Endometrial cancer is curable. Uterine sarcoma is more aggressive and it’s harder to treat.

Risk Factors

These factors may increase your chance of getting uterine cancer.

  • Being over 50 years old
  • Being obese
  • Taking only Click to closeestrogenAny of a group of steroid hormones which promote the development and maintenance of female characteristics of the body. Such hormones are also produced artificially for use in oral contraceptives or to treat menopausal and menstrual disorders.estrogen for hormone replacement during Click to closemenopauseA point in time 12 months after a woman's last period. This transitional period begins between ages 45 and 55.menopause
  • Having trouble getting pregnant
  • Having less than five periods in a year before starting menopause
  • Taking Click to closeTamoxifenA synthetic drug used to treat breast cancer and infertility in women. It acts as an estrogen antagonist.Tamoxifen
  • Having close family members who have had:
    • Uterine cancer
    • Colon cancer
    • Ovarian cancer

Prevention

You can’t prevent uterine cancer, but you can lower your chance of getting it. This includes:

  • Pregnancy and breast-feeding. Estrogen levels are lower during pregnancy. Estrogen levels are also lower when breast-feeding. The risk of endometrial cancer is also lower in women who’ve had children. Breastfeeding also decreases the risk of endometrial cancer.
  • Combining estrogen and Click to closeProgestinA form of progesterone; the hormone that plays a role in the menstrual cycle and pregnancy progestin. This is found in combined oral contraceptives.
  • Losing weight
  • Being physically active
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Using combined hormone therapy instead of estrogen-only hormone therapy

Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of uterine cancer include:

  • Vaginal discharge
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Pelvic pain
  • Pelvic pressure
Last Updated: August 08, 2023
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