Peritoneal cancer is a rare cancer that develops in the peritoneum, a thin, delicate sheet that lines the inside wall of the abdomen and covers the uterus and extends over the bladder and rectum. The peritoneum is made of epithelial cells. By producing a lubricating fluid, the peritoneum helps the organs to move smoothly inside the abdomen.
Peritoneal cancer looks and behaves like ovarian cancer, but the ovaries are minimally involved. Women who develop ovarian cancer after having had their ovaries previously removed likely have peritoneal cancer.
The surface of the ovaries also is made from epithelial cells. Therefore, peritoneal cancer and the most common type of ovarian cancer, called epithelial cancer, produce some of the same symptoms and are often treated in the same way. In addition, women who are at an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer, particularly due to the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations, also are at increased risk for peritoneum cancer.
Our Approach to Peritoneal Cancer
UCSF offers innovative, compassionate care in a supportive environment to patients with peritoneal cancer. Our team includes gynecologic oncologists, gynecologic cancer surgeons, radiation oncologists and nurses with special training in reproductive cancers. UCSF also offers genetic counseling for families at high risk of developing peritoneal cancer, which has been linked to the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations.
We believe that education is a powerful part of the healing process. Our team works with each patient to help her understand her condition and all her treatment options, so we can decide together on the best course of action.
Awards & recognition
Among the top hospitals in the nation
Best in Northern California for cancer care (tie)
Designated comprehensive cancer center
UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.