About Endometrial Cancer (Uterine Cancer):
Endometrial cancer, often referred to as uterine cancer is a cancer affecting the inner lining cells of the uterus of a woman. The inner epithelial tissue layer and the mucous membrane consist of the endometrium of the uterus. The data received from competent sources show that more than 382,000 cases of freshly diagnosed endometrial cancer and almost 90,000 cases of death due to the same emerged in 2018 alone.(1) Today the doctors know the treatment procedures supported with advanced devices and medicines. The triumphant role of taking immediate steps when confronted with early signs of endometrial cancer goes undisputed in its treatment.(2)
Before we know the early warning signs of endometrial cancer, let us first understand the stages of endometrial cancer as the signs would depend a lot on the stages.
Stages of Endometrial Cancer
There are five stages through which cancerous cells make their progress.
- Stage 0 of endometrial cancer is the state of the cancerous cell diagnosed at their point of origin, the lining without affecting the adjoining cells. Early symptoms may help the medical professional detect cancer and seek immediate medical intervention.
- Stage 1 denotes the spreading of the cancerous cells from the lining to the myometrium.
- Stage 2 means the cervix got affected too.
- When the vagina or a lymph node is diagnosed with cancer it enters Stage 3.
- Stage 4 begins when the spread continues and it reaches the intestine, bones, liver, or lungs.
If early signs of endometrial cancer go unattended, it may spread to distant parts as including the vagina, intestine, and rectum while putting the life of the patient at stake.(1)
Early Warning Signs of Endometrial Cancer
Like most other diseases and medical conditions, endometrial cancer also comes with early warning signs. While endometrial cancer is the most common cancer affecting the uterus, uterine sarcoma found in the muscles of the uterus remains less common.(3) There are certain signs and symptoms of endometrial cancer which need necessary medical care. Unless otherwise diagnosed, the early signs of endometrial cancer may include the following : –(1, 2)
- Infrequent cases of bleeding between periods and during post-menopausal life.
- Due to the location of the uterus, women often feel the pelvic region become uncommonly heavy while causing them pain and distress.
- The pain felt in the pelvic region usually increases during sexual intercourse.
- Instances of feeling pain during urinating are not very rare.
- Unplanned loss of body weight or suddenly detected a sharp fall in the body weight.
- A feeling of sheer exhaustion sustains through most of the hour of the day.
- There is a good number of instances of nausea as one of the early signs of endometrial cancer.
- Pain may pervade through various parts including the pelvic region and legs.
Death, due to cancer grows high in number because most of the time they get detected at stage 3 or beyond. Hence, detecting cancer at an early stage is indispensable for saving the life of the patient. The early warning signs, aforesaid, may serve the key role in allowing the detection of endometrial cancer at a very early stage.