What Is The Association Between Breat Density, Fibrocystic Breast Conditions And Cancer Risk?

Question

Asked by Be

What Is The Association Between Breat Density, Fibrocystic Breast Conditions And Cancer Risk?

I've heard that breast dense is a risk factor for breast cancer, but women with fibrocystic breasts are not at an increased risk. I also understand that fibrocystic breasts are dense breasts. I'm confused about what this means. Is the density associated with increased cancer risk different from the density caused by breast cysts and how do you distinguish between the two conditions? Thanks

Answer

This article about dense breasts and breast cancer risk explains the relationship. In general, younger women have denser breasts than older women, but they have fewer cases of breast cancer. So keep in mind that in this case denser would mean denser than other women of a similar age. You are correct that a history of breast cysts do not increase breast cancer risk. Both breast cysts and dense breasts can make it harder to detect cancerous tumors.

Breast cancer risk is a tricky thing. Plenty of women with no risk get breast cancer, and many women at high risk never do. So women should not panic if they have risk factors, and they shouldn't be complacent if they have few or no risk factors. Every woman needs to be alert to changes in her body and see her doctor about any changes that last longer than a menstrual period.

Answered by Phyllis Johnson