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Uterine Cancer, Ambulatory Care

Uterine cancer

is a tumor that develops in any of the 3 layers of your uterus. The endometrium is the inner layer and is the layer shed during a normal period. Endometrial carcinoma is the more common type of uterine cancer. Uterine sarcomas are cancers that start in the muscle or connective tissue of the uterus.

Common symptoms include the following:

  • Unusual vaginal bleeding, such as heavier periods, bleeding between periods, or bleeding after menopause
  • Abdominal or pelvic pain
  • A lump in your pelvic area
  • Weight loss without trying
  • Fatigue or feeling more tired than usual
  • Fever

Call 911 for any of the following:

  • Warm, tender, swollen, red, and painful arm or leg
  • Suddenly feeling lightheaded and short of breath
  • Chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough
  • Coughing up blood

Seek immediate care for the following symptoms:

  • Unusual vaginal bleeding, or blood in your urine
  • Bloody or black bowel movements

Treatment for uterine cancer

may include any of the following:

  • Hysterectomy is surgery to remove your uterus. Your fallopian tubes, ovaries, and nearby lymph nodes may also be removed.
  • Hormone medicine may be used if the cancer is sensitive to hormones.
  • Radiation therapy is used to kill cancer cells with high-energy x-ray beams.
  • Chemotherapy medicines are used to kill cancer cells.
  • Ablation is a procedure to destroy the endometrium. You may need ablation if you have heavy or abnormal vaginal bleeding.

Manage your uterine cancer:

  • Do not smoke. Smoking increases your risk for new or returning cancer. Smoking can also delay healing after treatment. Ask your healthcare provider for information if you currently smoke and need help quitting.
  • Drink liquids as directed. Ask how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you. If you have nausea or diarrhea from cancer treatment, extra liquids may help decrease your risk for dehydration.
  • Eat healthy foods. Foods may taste different during cancer treatment. You may not feel like eating, and you may lose weight. Healthy foods include fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meats, and fish. Eat small meals every 2 to 3 hours. Ask a dietitian for more information about the best eating plan for you.
  • Exercise as directed. Ask your healthcare provider or oncologist about the best exercise plan for you. Exercise prevents muscle loss and can help you feel more like eating.
  • Limit or do not drink alcohol as directed. Limit alcohol to 1 drink per day. A drink of alcohol is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1½ ounces of liquor.

Follow up with your healthcare provider or oncologist as directed:

You will need to see your oncologist for ongoing treatments or tests. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2015 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

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