Peritoneal cancer is a rare cancer that develops in the thin layer of tissue that lines the abdomen. This tissue, called the peritoneum, covers the uterus, bladder and rectum.

Peritoneal cancer acts and looks like ovarian cancer, mainly because the surface of the ovaries is made of the same type of cells as the peritoneum. Peritoneal cancer and ovarian cancer cause similar symptoms and are treated similarly. 

Our approach

The team of cancer experts at the Gynecologic Oncology Center, part of the North Shore-LIJ Cancer Institute, will work with each patient to develop a personalized treatment program. The physicians target every aspect of the cancer with some of the most aggressive treatments available. They support patients with therapies to boost the immune system, reduce pain and improve quality of life. They foster a caring environment that emphasizes emotional and educational support for patients and families.


Peritoneal cancer symptoms may include:

  • Abdominal discomfort or pain
  • Feeling of being full, even after a light meal
  • Nausea or diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Frequent urination
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unexplained weight loss or gain
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Shortness of breath 


A doctor will use a variety of tests to identify peritoneal cancer, including: