Uterine cancer is on the rise in the U.S. and it’s killing black women at a higher rate than any other group, a report says.
Between 1999 and 2015, Uterine cancer rates rose by 12 percent, from about 24 cases per 100,000 women in 1999 to 27 cases per 100,000 women in 2015, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Deaths from the disease increased from four per 100,000 women in 1999 to five per 100,000 in 2016.
The report comes from the CDC’s National Program of Cancer Registries and the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results program.
Rates of uterine cancer were once lower for black women than white women. Black women are now twice as likely to die from the disease.
Since 1999, the number of black women who developed the condition shot up by 46 percent. During the same time, the rate of white women developing uterine cancer rose 9 percent. By 2015, the rate for black women and white women was the same.
Each group has higher rates than Alaskan Indian/Native American, Hispanic and Asian/Pacific Island women.
The National Cancer Institute says women who are overweight or obese are twice to nearly four times as likely to develop uterine cancer. That’s more than 82 percent of black women in the U.S., according to the Health and Human Service.
But being overweight isn’t the only cause of the disease.
“There are many risk factors for developing uterine cancer,” Joseph Davis, an OB-GYN and medical director of the Cayman Fertility Center in the Caribbean, told NBC News.
Lack of physical activity, an increase cases of diabetes and a decline in the use of certain hormone therapies are also linked to development of uterine cancer.