There are 200,000 new cases of endometrial cancer diagnosed worldwide each year leading to 50,000 deaths (Mohr et al. 2007). In the U.S., endometrial cancer is the most common malignancy of the lower female genital tract with an incidence of 40,100 per year, nearly four times as common as cervical cancer (Jemal et al. 2008). Despite the relatively high incidence of endometrial cancer, the prognosis for endometrial cancer is better than for most other gynecologic malignancies. Even though endometrial cancer is greater than 1.7 times more common than ovarian cancer, the disease kills less than half as many women. Approximately 7,470 deaths occur due to endometrial cancer each year, compared to 15,520 deaths annually from ovarian cancer (Jemal et al. 2008). Endometrial cancer can occur in a wide age range, with the median age at diagnosis of 61 years (Plaxe and Saltzstein 1997; Sherman and Devesa 2003). Three quarters of the women diagnosed with endometrial cancer are post-menopausal. In addition to age, race and country of origin also appear to be factors. Eastern Asia and Western Africa have incidence rates nearly ten times lower than North America (IARC 2005). The lowest incidence rates are found in Eastern Asia (2.2 cases per 100,000), Western Africa (2.2 cases per 100,000), and South-Central Asia (2.3 cases per 100,000); whereas the highest rates are found in North America (22 cases per 100,000), Northern Europe (12.2 cases per 100,000), and Western Europe (12.5 cases per 100,000) (IARC 2005).
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