Symptoms of endometriosis and endometrial cancer are quite similar. However, despite their similar symptoms and their like-sounding names, endometriosis and endometrial cancer are very different conditions. Read to learn more about these sometimes challenging women’s health conditions.
Endometrial Cancer and Endometriosis
What causes endometriosis?
Tissue called the endometrium lines the inside of the uterus. When this tissue grows outside the uterus to surrounding reproductive organs like the fallopian tubes and ovaries, endometriosis occurs. It affects around 10 to 20 percent of all women in the United States, yet its cause is still unknown.
The abnormal tissues that cause endometriosis aren’t cancerous. The tissues merely grow where they shouldn’t. Also, you’ll be glad to hear endometriosis very rarely causes endometrial cancer. Less than one percent of women who were diagnosed with endometriosis went on to receive an endometrial cancer diagnosis.
While endometriosis doesn’t always lead to cancer, the tissue growth still causes serious problems and pains. Inflammation and scar tissue results with each menstruation, which affects the functions of fallopian tubes and ovaries. Therefore, endometriosis can be linked with infertility.
Other signs of endometriosis include:
- Pain during urination or bowel movements
- Severe menstrual cramps
- Feeling tired and having low energy
- Sharp pain during or after intercourse
- Abdominal and pelvic pain or lower back pain
- Abnormal bleeding or spotting between your period
- Gastrointestinal symptoms like constipation, nausea, bloating, diarrhea, etc.
What is endometrial cancer?
Endometrial cancer, also known as uterine cancer is caused by the growth of abnormal cells in the endometrium, or the lining of the uterus. This cancer mostly affects women over the age of 50 and like other cancers can be treated more easily when it’s caught early.
Uterine cancer occurs when a woman has too much estrogen in her system, thus causing an imbalance in the lining of the uterus. As endometrial cancer advances, the uterine lining gets thicker. And this buildup can help cancer cells grow more easily. Endometrial cancer shares very similar symptoms as endometriosis, so it’s best to contact your gynecologic oncologist immediately so that you can receive an endometrial cancer diagnosis with a biopsy.
Get More Education and Treatment
Conditions of the uterus can be painful and should be taken seriously. At Nevada Surgery and Cancer Center, our skilled staff can help in treating endometriosis, endometrial cancer, and other uterine complications. Learn more about these conditions by contacting us today.