Relationship of Premorbid State of Nutrition to Endometrial Carcinoma


  • Helle Jensen M.D.

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Pathology, Finsen Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark
    2. Department of Gynecology, Finsen Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark
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Department of Pathology, The Finsen Institute, Strandboulevarden 49, DK- 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark


Women with endometrial cancer are often reported as being overweight. It is thus of some interest to examine a possible connection between body weight and development of cancer corporis uteri, since a positive result might be of significance in a preventive respect. a retrospective epidemiological study of 414 patients revealed a positive correlation between body weight and endometrial carcinoma. 73.4% of the patients were overweight and 55.8% were obese. the patients had a significantly greater absolute and relative weight than normal controls of corresponding age. There was a tendency for the patients to be taller than the controls. Endometrial carcinoma may have a hormonal etiology as a result of prolonged or increased estrogenic influence on the endometrium, possibly intensified by missing progesterone stimulation. As obesity contributes to an increased level of estrogen—androstenedione being converted into estrone in the fatty tissue—a hypothesis is advanced that the diet is of importance for the development of endometrial carcinoma, as dietary quantity and composition may influence the estrogen metabolism, and thus affect the endometrial mucosa.