Is there a link between endometriosis and cancer?

Endometriosis is not a form of cancer. Endometriomas may be referred to as ‘benign tumours’: this means that the cyst is an abnormal ‘mass’ or swelling, but that it isn’t malignant (i.e. cancerous).

There are some studies which show a very slightly higher risk of developing ovarian cancer if someone has endometrioma cysts. However, the numbers of people living with endometriosis are far, far higher than the numbers developing ovarian cancer, so having endometriosis isn’t a reason to worry.

To put it into perspective, 1.3% of the general female population will develop ovarian cancer, compared to less than 2% of women who have endometriosis and go on to develop ovarian cancer*. So the difference is very small.