Uterine Cancer Prevention (<i>cont'd</i>)
And although there is no known way to prevent the disease, you may be able to reduce your risk by following these suggestions:
- Consider using birth control pills. Prescriptions that contain estrogens and/or progestins can have an impact on your risk of uterine or endometrial cancer. Taking birth control pills during childbearing years can markedly decrease your risk of both uterine and ovarian cancer. Although it is not widely known, several studies have demonstrated that use of the pill for five to 10 years decreases the risk of both these cancers by about 50 percent.
- Eat a diet low in animal fat. (There is some evidence that it may have more to do with overall caloric intake as well as the amount of fat per se in diet.)
- Control your weight by eating healthy foods and exercising. Exercise and diet regimens that result in significant weight loss can markedly decrease your risk of developing uterine cancer and also can decrease the risk of a number of other illnesses, including heart disease.
- Control your blood pressure by decreasing stress and eating a diet low in salt.
- Report abnormal bleeding promptly to your health care professional.
- Have an annual pelvic exam, including a Pap smear. (Bear in mind though that the Pap smear was neither designed to nor is it an accurate way of detecting uterine cancer.)