What are the types of uterine cancer?
Uterine cancer has two primary types, and it may develop in different parts of the uterus:
- Endometrial cancer: This type of cancer develops in the lining of the uterus, called the endometrium and is the most common type of uterine cancer, accounting for more than 90% of cases.
- Uterine sarcoma: This is a rarer type of uterine cancer, and forms in the muscles or other tissues of the uterus.
- Cervical cancer: This type of cancer develops in the lower part of the uterus, the cervix. It is not a type of uterine cancer. Diagnosis and treatment of this type of cancer is different from uterine cancer.
What is endometrial adenocarcinoma?
Endometrioid cancer, the most common type of endometrial adenocarcinoma develops in the glandular cells of the endometrium or the inner lining of the uterus. Under a microscope, the cells look very similar to normal, healthy endometrial cells but sometimes these tumors contain squamous cells along with the glandular cells.
Other histologic types of endometrial cancer include:
- Serous type
- Clear cell type
- Mixed cell tumors
What is adenosquamous carcinoma?
It is a rare uterine cancer that is similar to endometrial adenocarcinoma and carcinoma of the squamous cells that line the outer layer of the uterus.
What is papillary serous carcinoma?
Uterine papillary serous carcinoma (UPSC) is a rare form of endometrial cancer as it is diagnosed in barely 5% of uterine cancer cases. But it can spread faster than other types of uterine cancer and is more likely to come back even after the treatment.
What is uterine sarcoma?
Uterine sarcomas, which form in the muscle wall of the uterus, are rare, making up less than 4% of all cancers of the uterus. Each subtype of the uterine sarcoma differs in the way it develops and changes over time, as well as how it is treated.
The three main types of uterine sarcomas are:
- Uterine leiomyosarcoma: This is one of the most common types of uterine sarcoma, and it develops in the muscular wall of the uterus, known as the myometrium. It makes up about 2% of uterine cancers.
- Endometrial stromal sarcomas: These tumors develop in the connective tissue that supports the endometrium and represent less than 1% of all uterine cancers. This cancer type typically grows slowly.
- Undifferentiated sarcoma: It’s a rare subtype and is very similar to endometrial stromal sarcomas, but this cancer type is more aggressive. These cancers make up less than 1% of all uterine cancers.