The most common type of uterine cancer is endometrial cancer that occurs in the lining of the uterus. It occurs most often after menopause, however, it sometimes is diagnosed shortly before menopause.
Some of the symptoms of endometrial cancer include:
- Bleeding after menopause
- Spotting or bleeding in between periods
- Vaginal discharge (with or without blood)
- Pain during intercourse
- Difficulty with urination
- Pain during urination
- Pain in pelvic area
Abnormal bleeding can sometimes be mistaken for a symptom of menopause and ignored. Your doctor, however, will be able to determine if the bleeding you are experiencing is a symptom of menopause or if further testing is needed to determine the exact cause of the bleeding.
It is essential to see a doctor for additional screening if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. Many times these symptoms are caused by another, less serious illness, but because early detection improves the chances of success of treatment, it is imperative to see your gynecologist.
Screening for endometrial cancer is not normally recommended unless you have a higher risk (hereditary). Annual, routine examinations and Pap smears do not detect endometrial cancer. Because of this, it is important for women to contact their doctor for any abnormal bleeding or other symptoms they may be experiencing.
Treatment for uterine, or endometrial cancer, is normally a hysterectomy.
"Cancer of the Uterus: Symptoms", Updated 2002, Sept 16, National Cancer Institute
"Uterine Cancer", 2008, Sept 19, Medline Plus
"What Are the Symptoms of Endometrial Cancer?", 2006, Mar 16, Women's Cancer Network
"Uterine Cancer Symptoms", 2008, Cancer Treatment Centers of America