9/11 Uterine Cancer and Endometrial Cancer

Aerial view of Ground Zero following 9/11 with U.S. flag flying in center.

Uterine Cancer and Endometrial Cancer diagnosis have been added to the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund

As of January 18, 2023, the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) added Uterine Cancer and Endometrial Cancer to the list of eligible cancers for compensation from the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

To learn more about your eligibility and compensation, visit our main page about the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

According to the CDC, uterine cancer has been determined to be the most common gynecological cancer. Uterine Cancer and Endometrial Cancer have been added as covered conditions for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund 

  • The two primary forms of uterine cancer are endometrial cancer and uterine sarcoma.
  • Over 822,000 women in the United States have been diagnosed with these reproductive cancers.
  • These cancers are estimated to cause 12,500 deaths in 2022 alone.

As of January 18, 2023, the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) provides treatment at no out-of-pocket cost for people diagnosed with uterine cancers, including endometrial cancer. 

Financial compensation may also be available through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) to anyone diagnosed with Uterine or Endometrial cancer who can show that they were in the Lower Manhattan Exposure Zone at any time during the 8 months following 9/11. This includes residents, workers, students, visitors, volunteers and first responders.

First responder at a still smoldering Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan following 9/11
Female first responder overlooking Ground Zero

Does the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund provide compensation for Uterine Cancer?

The 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund  (9/11 VCF) provides monetary awards to qualifying victims or family members who have certified medical illnesses linked to a 9/11 exposure site following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Now that uterine cancer has been added as a covered condition, a victim can file a claim with the 9/11 VCF for a past or current illness and may be eligible for a VCF award payment. The first step is to have a medical examination performed by the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) and receive a diagnosis of one of the certified 9/11-related illnesses.

Are you eligible to collect
9/11 Cancer Compensation?

Thanks to the continued advocacy by individuals like Dr. Iris Udasin of the World Trade Center Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program at Rutger’s University, the WTCHP now recognizes a new 9/11-related cancer for the first time since 2011. After being prompted by members of Congress, Dr. Udasin, and others treating 9/11 victims, the United States Department of Health and Human Services recommended that uterine cancer be recognized as a 9/11-related condition. This recognition allows September 11th first responders and survivors to receive free yearly check-ups, preventative screenings, and medical care for related conditions from the WTCHP. 

The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund now recognizes this cancer as a qualifying condition that is eligible for compensation

Diagram of a healthy female reproductive system

What is uterine cancer?

Uterine cancer is any cancer that occurs inside the uterus and includes endometrial cancer, uterine sarcoma, and other rare uterine cancers. Endometrial cancer develops within the uterus’ inner lining. Most typically, this cancer forms following menopause and is the most common reproductive cancer with 3% of women receiving a diagnosis of endometrial cancer. 

A less common form of uterine cancer is uterine sarcoma, which develops in the uterus’ muscular structure and supportive tissues.

What can cause uterine cancer?

Factors including age, menstruation age, total pregnancies, and infertility can affect the development of uterine cancer.  Some risk factors include diabetes, family history, hormone levels, having had breast or ovarian cancer, endometrial hyperplasia (thickening of the uterine lining), pelvic radiation therapy, obesity, diet and exercise. 

Chemical exposure can also be a contributing factor in the development of uterine cancer. Numerous substances, like asbestos, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs), and dioxins have been proven to be carcinogenic (cancer-causing). These toxins can induce DNA alteration, chronic inflammation, or endocrine changes, which are drivers of cancer formation. Many products, both domestic - such as Styrofoam padding in office chairs, and industrial - like jet fuel or fire retardants, contain toxins that are human carcinogens. Specifically, the flame retardant Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) has been found to cause uterine tumors. 

Toxic air at Ground Zero following the September 11th terrorist attacks

Could women exposed to toxins from Ground Zero develop 9/11 uterine cancer?

Days after the attacks on September 11, 2001, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that residents, employees, and students could return to their daily activities in Lower Manhattan. The EPA declared it safe to return to the area surrounding the site of the terrorist attacks, the New York City (NYC) Exposure Zone. A 2003 EPA report stated that “the agency lacked the information needed to make such a determination.” The report noted thousands of chemicals, including carcinogens, were detected in air quality tests in Lower Manhattan. Among the carcinogens found in the NYC Exposure Zone were asbestos, chromium, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, PBCs, and dioxins, a chemical that is released by fires and moves through the air or water. 

Because of the expansive range that the pollutants traveled and the extended timeframe in which they were detected, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that almost 500,000 people were exposed to hazardous conditions in Lower Manhattan following 9/11. These individuals could have been made sick by their exposure but may not know that they qualify for medical care and monitoring from the WTCHP and could be eligible for compensation from the 9/11 VCF. Anyone who was at an exposure site at any point between September 11, 2001 - May 30, 2002, should register with the WTCHP and the 9/11 VCF.

Have you been diagnosed with uterine cancer?

What are the symptoms of uterine cancer?

Woman experiencing pain associated with uterine cancer

The most common symptom of uterine cancer is abnormal vaginal bleeding, defined as altered menstruation, occurring outside of expected cycles, or postmenopausal bleeding. Later stages of uterine cancer can also include:

  • pelvic pain
  • mass development
  • weight loss without dietary or lifestyle changes

The WTCHP provides early detection screenings to its members for cancers. The Program emphasizes that anyone who spent time at a 9/11-exposure site for any quantity of time from September 11, 2001 - July 31, 2002, should register with the WTCHP. Registration with the Program allows individuals to receive free health monitoring and treatment for all 9/11-related conditions.

How is uterine cancer diagnosed?

Women who are experiencing any symptoms associated with uterine cancer, especially if they are post-menopausal, should immediately schedule a medical appointment for diagnosis. During the visit, a healthcare provider will review symptoms and risk factors. They will perform a physical exam, including a pelvic examination and typically order an ultrasound to for a better picture of the reproductive area.

Further testing using tissue sampling can establish what physical changes are occurring to the endometrial tissue. A laboratory will examine the tissue microscopically to search for cancer cells. If cancer is detected, the pathologist will determine what type is present and its stage.  

Are you eligible for the September 11th
Victim Compensation Fund?

How is uterine cancer treated?

Both common forms of uterine cancer, endometrial cancer and uterine sarcoma, are treated in similar ways. Each cancer requires staging (determining how much cancer there is) before a physician makes a decision on treatment options. Care for uterine cancer can include:

  • surgery
  • radiation
  • chemotherapy
  • hormone therapy
  • other targeted therapies

How do you choose the right VCF attorney?

A VCF attorney can guide you through the process and ensure that your claim is complete and filed on time. They may also help you recover the highest award that you are entitled to receive and knows what is needed if your claim is denied. They are prepared to appeal your denial and to continue the fight for your award. A 9/11 VCF attorney can also amend any existing claim to add new medical conditions as they arise. 

Kreindler has helped 9/11 victims recover over $4 billion in VCF awards.

Our 9/11 VCF team, led by our firm’s managing partner, Noah Kushlefsky, is available by phone or chat on our website twenty-four hours a day. Noah and our VCF team will work to get you the compensation that you are entitled to receive. 

Are you eligible to collect
9/11 Cancer Compensation?