1/8 women in the USA will develop breast cancer in their lifetime, yet most women who get breast cancer do not have an identifiable risk!
Of all women who get breast cancer only 30-40 percent will have a known risk factor and the remainder 60-70 percent who get breast cancer will have no known risk factors.
These risk factors are divided in genetic or environmental.
Genetic factors cannot be altered but environmental factors can be successfully diminished with behavioral choices.
Genetic factors include: age, race, ancestry, family or personal history of breast pre-cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate and pancreatic cancer.
Environmental factors include: being overweight, not exercising enough, drinking alcohol, taking estrogen therapies such as birth control pills and estrogen replacement for menopause.
It is easy to estimate the breast cancer risk by answering the questions in the breast cancer risk assessment tool. It is also called the Gail Model
The Gail Model helps us guess the risk of developing an invasive breast cancer over the next 5 years and up to age 90 – also called the lifetime risk.
This tool uses the personal medical and reproductive history and the history of breast cancer among her first degree relatives such mother, sister, daughter to estimate the chance of developing an invasive breast cancer at a certain age interval.
Women can do their own risk evaluation by answering the online questions.
Please contact our office for an evaluation including breast exam and mammogram.
Women who have an average breast cancer risk need to start their evaluation at age of 40 and do so once every 1-2 years.