Endometrial cancer is a cancer that arises from the endometrium (the lining of the uterus or womb). It is the result of the abnormal growth of cells that have the ability to invade or spread to other parts of the body. The first sign is most often vaginal bleeding not associated with a menstrual period. Other symptoms include pain with urination or sexual intercourse, or pelvic pain. Endometrial cancer occurs most commonly after menopause.
As of 2014, approximately 320,000 women are diagnosed with endometrial cancer worldwide each year and 76,000 die, making it the sixth most common cancer in women. It is more common in developed countries, where the lifetime risk of endometrial cancer in people born with uteri is 1.6%, compared to 0.6% in developing countries. It occurs in 12.9 out of 100,000 women annually in developed countries. The worldwide median age of diagnosis is 63 years of age,in the United States, the average age of diagnosis is 60 years of age.
The treatment of endometrial cancer varies depending on the stage of the cancer. Staging is based on the findings from the initial surgery, which involves the removal of the entire uterus and cervix (total abdominal hysterectomy), the fallopian tubes, and the ovaries. These organs are examined to determine the extent of the cancer (staging). During this operation, cells are collected from the peritoneal cavity and tested for cancer. The lymph nodes in the pelvis and surrounding areas are removed and examined for cancer. Only then is a decision made about treatment.