Have you ever heard of endometrial cancer? Here’s what you need to know about this type of cancer that only women can have.
What is endometrial cancer?
It is a type of cancer that comes or begins in the uterus, a uterus is where fetal development occurs. It is a hollow and pear-shaped organ of a woman.
Endometrial cancer is also called uterine cancer, usually, this kind of cancer begins in the layer of cells from the lining of the endometrium of the uterus.
This type of cancer is usually detected in its early stage because it creates abnormal bleeding.
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Symptoms of endometrial cancer
Here are the most common symptoms of endometrial cancer in women:
- Pelvic pain
- Vaginal bleeding even after menopause
- Bleeding in between periods
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Painful urination
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Causes of endometrial cancer
There are no profound studies to know the causes of uterine cancer, what we know so far is that something occurs to mutations in the cells DNA in the endometrium or the lining of the uterus.
Who are at risk of having endometrial cancer?
Being obese may put you at risk of having uterine cancer because the body fat may alter your hormones which may lead to unbalanced hormones.
Additionally, women who have hormonal imbalance syndrome like polycystic ovary syndrome may be at risk of developing uterine cancer.
Had menstruation at an early age
If you had menstruation before the age of 12 years old, you might have a high risk of developing uterine cancer. Since you have experience periods a lot more, your exposure to estrogen through your endometrium might put you at risk of this type of cancer.
Also, old age is one of the factors in developing uterine cancer, and it happens usually after menopause.
How to diagnose this?
There are tests and procedures to diagnose this type of cancer. Here are some of the tests and procedures to diagnose uterine cancer:
During the pelvis examination, your doctor will check your vulva and then inserts the two fingers of their hand into your vagina to feel and check your ovaries and uterus.
They might insert a device called a speculum, a speculum helps your doctor to view your cervix and vagina for irregularity.
Transvaginal ultrasound or TVS
Your medical doctor might conduct a TVS to check the thickness and texture of your endometrium. It can help them rule out other conditions you might have in your reproductive organ.
This kind of procedure uses a wandlike device that will be inserted into your vagina to look into it. Using its sound waves it will create an image or video of your uterus.
In addition, your doctor might do tissue testing where they will remove a sample tissue for testing. In this procedure, the tissue that was removed from your uterine lining will be tested in a laboratory or what we called it an endometrial biopsy to check if you have uterine cancer.
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How can you prevent endometrial cancer?
We listed some of the things that can be helpful in preventing on having endometrial cancer. Here are the following things you can do:
- Have a healthy lifestyle
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Have regular checkups
- Regular pap smear test at least every 3 years
Clearly, there are many treatments for endometrial cancer especially if it’s detected early. The usual treatment for endometrial cancer is surgery where the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries are removed.
Subsequently, other treatment options for this type of cancer are radiation therapy, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy.
Talk to your doctor if you are having endometrial cancer symptoms to discuss your treatment plan. Remember that prevention is better than cure. That’s why having regular check-ups with your OB-GYN might help you to be more healthy.
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