Study Ties Breast Gene To High-Risk Uterine Cancer

A study suggests that women with a faulty breast cancer gene might have a greater chance of developing rare but deadly uterine tumors despite having their ovaries removed to lower their main cancer risks.

Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York say four cases of aggressive uterine cancers were found in about 300 women years after they had preventive surgery to remove their ovaries. That rate is 26 times greater than expected.

The problem was only seen in women with flawed BRCA1 genes. Doctors say that until more research confirms this link, it is too soon to advise such women to have their uterus removed along with their ovaries, but that it is worth discussing.

The study was reported Monday at a cancer conference in Tampa, Fla.