The Truth About Uterine Cancer

Women have it drilled into their heads to get regular pap smears to prevent cervical cancer, and to have regular breast exams to spot breast cancer early.

But what do you know about uterine cancer – the most common cancer of the female reproductive organs?

More women are developing and dying from uterine cancer, of which endometrial cancer is the most common type.

And here’s what you need to know about it:

The number of women diagnosed with endometrial cancer is increasing, mostly because of an increase in obesity.

It usually happens after menopause.

Black women are nearly twice as likely to die from it -- and possibly more likely to have an aggressive form.

And abnormal bleeding is usually the first sign.

"It can be bleeding in between cycles, it can be even just heavy cycles, you can have bleeding after intercourse, you can have late menopause," said Dr. Colin Koon of Baylor Scott and White, who specializes in Gynecologic Oncology.

As obesity rates increase in this country, doctors fear younger women, even those decades from menopause, may fall victim even more.

Dr. Koon said if you're 30 pounds over-weight, you have a 3-fold risk higher of getting endometrial cancer.

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