• Reducing Your Risk of Uterine (Endometrial) Cancer

    A risk factor increases your chances of developing cancer. Modifying the following risk factors may help reduce your risk of uterine or endometrial cancer.

    General Guidelines

    The use of birth control pills is associated with decreased risk of uterine cancer. But experts do not recommend taking these pills solely to prevent uterine cancer.
    Preventive suggestions include controlling your weight, controlling your glucose levels if you have diabetes, and maintaining good general health.

    Lifestyle Changes

    Losing weight may help decrease your risk of uterine cancer. Women who are overweight tend to have higher levels of estrogens, and this may be why their risk of uterine cancer is higher than average.
    Uterine cancer is more common in women with diabetes. This may simply be due to the fact that being overweight puts women at higher risk for both diseases. There may be other factors beyond the common link with obesity, however. Some of the metabolic changes that occur in diabetes may actually contribute to the development of uterine cancer. Therefore, good control of diabetes with diet, exercise, and medicines as prescribed by your doctor could possibly reduce your risk of uterine cancer.

    Medical Care

    See your doctor regularly. Inform your doctor of any menstrual abnormalities, and report any menstrual bleeding that occurs after menopause. Discuss options for managing symptoms of menopause with your doctor.

    Oral Contraceptives

    Birth control pills (oral contraceptives) have been shown to decrease the risk of uterine cancer, especially in women who have not borne children. It is theorized that the progestin in the pills may offer a protective benefit. The use of birth control pills is associated with decreased risk of uterine cancer, but experts do not recommend taking these pills solely to prevent uterine cancer.


    American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org.

    Bast R, Kufe D, et al, eds. Cancer Medicine. 5th ed. Hamilton, Ontario: BC Decker Inc; 2000.

    National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.nci.nih.gov.

    Rakel R. Bope E, ed. Conn's Current Therapy. 54th ed. St. Louis, MO: WB Saunders; 2002: 1094-1096.

    Revision Information

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