Causes and Risks of Breast Cancer

Although the precise causes of breast cancer are unclear, we know the main risk factors. Still, most women considered at high risk for breast cancer do not get it, while many with no known risk factors do develop breast cancer. Among the most significant factors are advancing age and a family history of breast cancer. Risk increases for a woman who has certain types of benign breast lumps and increases significantly for a woman who has previously had cancer of the breast or the ovaries.
A woman whose mother, sister, or daughter has had breast cancer is two to three times more likely to develop the disease, particularly if more than one first-degree relative has been affected. Researchers have identified two genes responsible for some instances of familial breast cancer. These genes are known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. About one woman in 200 carries the genes. Having one of them predisposes a woman to breast cancer but does not ensure that she will get it.
Generally, women over age 50 are more likely to get breast cancer than younger women, and African-American women are more likely than Caucasians to get breast cancer before menopause
  • A history of breast cancer
  • Reproductive hormones
  • Breast structure
  • Fatty acid imbalance
  • Medication use
  • Breast size (Dense breast tissue)
  • Breast surgery
  • Radiation Exposure
  • Alcohol consumption breast lumps
  • Genetics Estrogen exposure
  • Early menstrual period
  • Late or no pregnancy
  • Starting menopause after age 55
  • Not being physically active
  • Being overweight or obese after menopause
  • Having dense breasts
  • Using combination hormone therapy

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