NWCR
Putting our region's cancer needs first

Womb Cancer

There are approximately 9,800 new uterine cancer cases in the UK each year, which translates to about 27 cases daily. Uterine cancer is the 4th most common cancer among females in the UK, accounting for 5% of all new cancer cases in women

SYMPTOMS

Main symptoms of womb cancer can include:

  • bleeding or spotting from the vagina after the menopause
  • heavy periods from your vagina that is unusual for you
  • vaginal bleeding between your periods
  • a change to your vaginal discharge

Other symptoms of womb cancer can include:

  • a lump or swelling in your tummy or between your hip bones (pelvis)
  • pain in your lower back or between your hip bones (pelvis)
  • pain during sex
  • blood in your pee

CAUSES

Being overweight or obese is one of the most significant risk factors for womb cancer in the UK. However, several other factors can also increase the risk of developing this type of cancer.

Womb cancer, also known as uterine cancer, occurs in the uterus, the medical term for the womb. It is often referred to as endometrial cancer because it originates in the endometrium, the lining of the womb.

DIAGNOSIS

See your doctor if you notice any unusual changes or possible signs of cancer. Don't delay, even if you are worried about the symptoms. Keep trying if you are having trouble getting an appointment; your concern will not go away without consultation.

The symptom might not be cancer, but early detection improves treatment success.

TREATMENT

Womb cancer is usually treatable when it is found early.

The treatment you have for womb cancer will depend on:

  • the size of the cancer
  • where it is
  • if it has spread
  • your general health

It will usually include surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy. It may also include treatment with targeted medicines to treat the cancer.

Surgery is often the primary treatment for womb cancer, especially when detected early. Various surgical procedures may involve removing:

  • The womb and cervix (hysterectomy)
  • The womb, ovaries, and fallopian tubes if the cancer has spread there
  • Lymph nodes around the womb or in the pelvis
  • The upper part of the vagina connected to the cervix
  • The bladder or rectum if the cancer has returned or spread to these areas

Radiotherapy uses high-energy radiation to kill cancer cells.

You may receive radiotherapy for womb cancer:

  • As the primary treatment if surgery is not an option
  • If the cancer is large or has spread
  • After surgery, typically combined with chemotherapy (chemoradiotherapy), to help prevent recurrence.

Chemotherapy involves using medications to kill cancer cells.

You may receive chemotherapy for womb cancer:

  • Combined with radiotherapy (called chemoradiotherapy) as the primary treatment if surgery is not an option
  • After surgery (usually with radiotherapy) to help prevent the cancer from returning
  • To slow the cancer's progression and alleviate symptoms if it has spread to other parts of your body

You may also receive:

  • Hormone therapy
  • Immunotherapy

If you have any concerns about the signs and symptoms of womb cancer, please visit your GP.

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