Women with endometriosis face a much greater risk of developing some forms of ovarian cancer later in life than those who don’t suffer the painful uterine condition, according to a new study.
University of Southern California researchers, reporting in the journal Lancet Oncology, found women with endometriosis are two to three three times more likely to develop three different types of ovarian cancer.
Endometriosis strikes 1 in 10 women and can cause pain, bleeding and fertility problems, according to the National Institutes of Health.
The new study was based on an analysis of health information from more than 23,000 women with ovarian cancer.
Researchers concluded: “Self-reported endometriosis was associated with a significantly increased risk of clear-cell, low-grade serous, and endometrioid invasive ovarian cancers.”
The researchers also noted most women with endometriosis never develop ovarian cancers, but the findings should alert patients and physicians of the high risks.