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Uterine Cancer Care

When you have cancer, you need a team of strong support. A diagnosis of uterine cancer can feel overwhelming, but you are not alone. We are here for you every step of the way through your journey of diagnosis and treatment.

Cancer treatments have progressed significantly in recent years and survivor rates have increased as a result.

Coordinated Team Approach

We provide coordinated care that includes the latest treatments in surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Each patient is an important and active part of her care team. Our goal is for patients to be involved in all decisions related to care and to always know the next step.

We want to help you feel healthy again. In addition to the critical medical treatments you will receive, we offer health and wellness services that treat the whole body and mind, promoting physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual healing. 

On this page, learn more about uterine cancer, our services, and what you can expect during your treatment journey. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us at 231-392-8400 or CancerServices@mhc.net

What is Uterine Cancer?

Uterine cancer begins in the uterus, the organ where a fetus grows. 

Endometrial cancer is the most common type of uterine cancer. This type of cancer begins in the inner lining of the uterus, called the endometrium. Endometrial cancer is usually an adenocarcinoma, meaning that it begins in the cells that make mucus and other fluids. 

Uterine sarcoma is an uncommon type of uterine cancer that forms in the muscle and tissue that support the uterus. This type of cancer is more difficult to cure.

Risk Factors

  • Certain inherited conditions
  • History of polycystic ovary syndrome 
  • Late menopause
  • Never having children
  • Obesity
  • Taking estrogen alone, without progesterone 
  • Use of Tamoxifen, a drug used to treat and prevent breast cancer, increases risk slightly. 

Pregnancy, use of oral contraceptives or intrauterine devices, and physical activity are associated with reduced risk. 

Learn More about Uterine Cancer

What to Expect

Diagnosis

Cancer treatment begins with a diagnosis. Through testing, your physician will determine your type of cancer. These test results will help us develop an individualized treatment plan for you.

We understand that this phase can be very difficult as you are waiting for answers. Our goal is to move you through the diagnostic process as quickly as possible in order to minimize the emotional strain.

Your Treatment Plan

We offer a coordinated approach to care that varies based on your specific needs. 

Your case may be discussed at our weekly Tumor Board meetings. This is a multidisciplinary team of physicians and support staff that discusses patients’ care plans and makes recommendations for multiple types of cancer. 

After testing and consultations are complete, your gynecologic oncologist will explain to you the characteristics of the cancer and discuss treatment. You may be referred to a radiation oncologist depending on your needs and care plan. 

Treatment for your cancer will depend upon the type, location, and stage of the cancer. Other factors that impact treatment decisions include your age and other health conditions. 

Treatment most often involves surgery to remove the cancer. This often includes removal of the uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes. Even if all of the cancer is removed during surgery, radiation or hormone treatment is sometimes given after surgery to kill any cancer cells that may remain. Chemotherapy may be recommended and depends on the type and stage of the cancer. 

Learn More about Uterine Cancer Treatment

Health and Wellness at the Cowell Family Cancer Center

We believe that everything matters in cancer treatment.

The Health and Wellness Suite at the Cowell Family Cancer Center in Traverse City offers space for physical, emotional and spiritual healing through integrative therapies, meditation, exercise, nutrition and the arts. 

Services are available for patients, staff, family members, caregivers and the community.

Services include:

Meet our Care Team

Our team of specialists provides screening, diagnosis, and treatment for uterine cancer. Your care team may include:

Gynecologic OncologistA physician who specializes in diagnosing and treating cancers of the female reproductive organs including cervical cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer, vaginal cancer, and vulvar cancer. Gynecologic oncologists have completed an obstetrics and gynecology residency and then pursued subspecialty training through a gynecologic oncology fellowship which includes surgical, chemotherapeutic, radiation, and research techniques that are important to providing the best care for these types of cancer.

Radiation OncologistsPhysicians with an expertise in the use of radiation therapy for treating cancer.

The Cowell Family Cancer Center Support Team

Genetics Consultation

Uterine cancer can be associated with certain hereditary gene changes that may increase the risk of developing cancer. These gene changes can be passed on to family members. 

Depending on your family history and personal risk factors, you may be referred to our cancer genetics clinic for a consultation.

You will meet with our nurse practitioner who is specially trained in cancer genetics. She will discuss your family’s risk and genetic testing currently available. 

Support and Guidance

Our care coordination team is here to support you and includes a nurse and nurse practitioner who will ensure that your next steps are planned and communicated. 

Our compassionate team also includes a dietitian, a social worker, palliative/supportive care providers, and financial navigators to ensure that your individual needs are addressed. 

For more information regarding Cowell Family Cancer Center services or to be transferred to a regional network facility, call  231-392-8400 and speak with one of our resource specialists. 

Availability of support services varies according to the specific regional cancer network location.

Treatment Locations

Cowell Family Cancer Center

You can find treatment and resources for uterine cancer at our Cowell Family Cancer Center on the Munson Medical Center campus in Traverse City. This state-of-the-art cancer center opened in 2016 and provides most cancer services, including diagnosis, treatment, integrative therapies, follow-up, and supportive care.

Other Locations

Medical oncology follow up visits and chemotherapy may be available to you close to home through our regional cancer network.

Clinical Trials for Uterine Cancer

Clinical trials are studies that involve people and are the final research step in a long process that begins with lab research. You may want to consider participating in a clinical trial, which gives you access to the latest cancer treatments.

Depending on the clinical trial, part of your care may need to occur in Traverse City.

We have participated in cancer clinical trials for more than 30 years through the National Cancer Institute. This program offers our patients the chance to participate in large, national research trials while remaining at home in northern Michigan.

To learn more about clinical trials for uterine cancer, visit these websites or talk to your doctor: