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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Letrozole as a Treatment for Endometrial Cancer

Principal Investigator: Professor Lloyd Smith, M.D., Ph.D.

Co-Investigator: Assistant Professor Susannah Mourton, M.D.


Endometrial carcinoma is the most common gynecologic malignancy, with approximately 35,000 new cases annually in the United States. The mainstay of treatment is hysterectomy with surgical staging for detection of occult lymphatic or peritoneal metastases. Over 7,000 deaths from uterine cancer occur annually, most as a result of advanced or recurrent disease. The extent of disease reflected in the tumor stage, and the degree of pathologic differentiation, or grade, are strong determinants of prognosis.


Some cases of endometrial cancer are dependent on estrogen for their growth. Letrozole blocks estrogen production in the body. The purpose of this study is to determine if the investigators can predict which patients might benefit from Letrozole treatment by studying the many different forms of the estrogen receptor molecule that exist within the cancer tissues. To participate in this study, the patients must be 40 years of age or older and have biopsy-proven endometrial carcinoma, either well differentiated or moderately differentiated forms. Also, to be eligible to participate in this study, the patients need to be healthy enough to have a hysterectomy. If the patients are less than age 60, they will need a blood test (FSH) to confirm that they have gone into menopause.