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What are the symptoms?

The most common symptom of cancer of the uterus is unusual vaginal bleeding, particularly any bleeding after menopause. Some women experience a smelly, watery discharge. In rare cases, symptoms include abdominal pain, unexplained weight loss, difficulty urinating or a change in bowel habit.

Any of these symptoms can happen for other reasons, but it is best to check with your doctor if you are concerned.

Which health professionals will I see?

Your general practitioner (GP) will arrange the first tests to assess any symptoms. If these tests do not rule out cancer, you will be referred to a gynaecological oncologist or gynaecologist for more tests. If uterine cancer is diagnosed, the specialist will consider treatment options. Often these will be discussed with other health professionals at what is known as a multidisciplinary team (MDT) meeting. During and after treatment, you’ll see a range of health professionals for various aspects of your care.

gynaecological oncologistdiagnoses and performs surgery for cancers of the female reproductive system, e.g. uterine, cervical, ovarian, vulvar and vaginal cancers
gynaecologistspecialises in diseases of the female reproductive system; may diagnose cancer of the uterus and then refer you to a gynaecological oncologist
radiation oncologisttreats cancer by prescribing and overseeing a course of radiation therapy
medical oncologisttreats cancer with chemotherapy and other drug therapies
cancer care coordinatorcoordinates care, liaises with other members of the MDT and supports you and your family throughout treatment; care may also be coordinated by a clinical nurse consultant (CNC) or clinical nurse specialist (CNS)
nurseadministers drugs and provides care, information and support throughout treatment
women’s health physiotherapistassists with physical problems associated with gynaecological cancers, such as bladder and bowel issues, sexual issues and pelvic pain
dietitianrecommends an eating plan to follow during and after treatment
social workerlinks you to support services and helps you with emotional, practical or financial issues
psychologist, counsellorhelp you manage your emotional response to diagnosis and treatment

This information is reviewed by

This information was last reviewed March 2019 by the following expert content reviewers: A/Prof Alison Brand, Director, Gynaecological Oncology, Westmead Hospital, NSW; Kate Barber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council Victoria; Prof Jonathan Carter, Director, Gynaecological Oncology, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, NSW; Dr Robyn Cheuk, Senior Radiation Oncologist, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, QLD; Dr Alison Davis, Medical Oncologist, Canberra Region Cancer Centre, The Canberra Hospital, ACT; Kim Hobbs, Clinical Specialist Social Worker, Westmead Hospital, NSW; Nicole Kinnane, Nurse Coordinator, Gynaecology Oncology, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Jennifer Loveridge, Consumer; Pauline Tanner, Gynaecology Cancer Nurse Coordinator, WA Cancer & Palliative Care Network, North Metropolitan Health Service, WA.