Patient perceptions and understanding of obesity related endometrial cancer

Type Article

Journal Article


M. Wilkinson; S. Murphy; P. Sinclair; H. Heneghan; C. W. le Roux; D. J. Brennan

Year of publication



Gynecol Oncol Rep







Obesity is the greatest risk factor for endometrial cancer. There is often a lack of recognition amongst patients about this risk. Evidence for weight-loss in the management of endometrial cancer is emerging. This was questionnaire-based study, that examined opinions and attitudes of patients with endometrial cancer and obesity towards obesity as a risk factor for cancer as well as examining their willingness to engage in weight loss interventions as an alternative treatment to endometrial cancer. This survey was conducted in a gynaeoncology out-patient department in Ireland. A total of 45/50 (90%) of questionnaires were completed. The majority of the patients questioned (86.7%; 39/45) agreed that obesity is a disease. Just over half of the cohort (53.3%; 24/45) believed that obesity can cause cancer. Over one-third, 39.9% (18/45) either disagreed or strongly disagreed that obesity is a risk factor for endometrial cancer while 35.5% (16/45) agreed or strongly agreed. Two-thirds (66.6%; 30/45) knew that the greatest amount of weight could be lost through metabolic surgery. Over three-quarters (82.1%; 37/45) of patients surveyed would be willing to engage in a combination of treatments in order to achieve weight-loss should it be proven to have a role in the management of endometrial cancer. This study demonstrates a need for patient education regarding the strong relationship between obesity and endometrial cancer risk. Patients are willing to consider weight loss interventions if they were proven to be as safe and effective as pelvic surgery in the management of endometrial cancer.