Family history of breast cancer, breast density may be linked

A greater risk of breast cancer can come from several factors—chief among them being a first-degree relative with the disease, mammogram-identified dense breasts. Photo: Pexels

(Maggie L Shaw/ AJMC) This study investigated the relationships seen among premenopausal women with a family history of breast cancer and their breast tissue density as seen at their annual mammographic screening.

A potential link has been found among premenopausal women between their mammography-determined breast cancer and having a family history of the disease, with the investigators of a new study in JAMA Network Open ultimately stressing the importance of initiating annual screening mammograms at an earlier age in this patient population.

“Family history of breast cancer (FHBC) and mammographic breast density are independent risk factors for breast cancer, but the association of FHBC and mammographic breast density in premenopausal women is not well understood,” they wrote. “Our primary outcomes were mammographic breast density measured quantitatively as volumetric percent density using Volpara and qualitatively using BI-RADS (Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System) breast density (validation set).” (…)

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