(Reuters Health) – Women usually tend to develop breast cancer when a mom or sister had this illness, and the risk related to household history doesn’t seem to decrease with age, a U.S. research suggests.
Family history has lengthy been linked to the next risk of breast cancer in youthful women, who’re usually suggested to begin getting screening mammograms after they’re ten years youthful than the age their relative was at analysis.
But household history has been regarded as much less of an element for the aged, and women usually cease routine screenings by their 70s.
“Older women with family history have an approximately two-fold higher risk of breast cancer compared to women with no family history,” mentioned lead research creator Dejana Braithwaite of the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
“As we go from age-based to risk-based screening recommendations, our findings show that older women with family history may benefit from continued mammography screening, even after age 74,” Braithwaite mentioned by e-mail.
While present U.S. pointers advise women to get a screening mammogram each different yr from age 50 to 74, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force hasn’t discovered ample proof but to weigh in on whether or not women ought to proceed screening after that.
The objective of mammograms is to detect tumors earlier than they are often felt in a bodily breast examination, catching cancer sooner when it’s simpler to deal with. Ideally, this could imply fewer women are recognized when tumors are greater, quickly rising, and more durable to assault.
But widespread screening may catch small, slow-growing tumors which might be unlikely to be deadly. Particularly when women are older or have a restricted life expectancy, detection of those much less harmful tumors may end in pointless assessments and remedy.
But for older women with a household history of breast cancer, the advantages of screening should outweigh the dangers.
Researchers examined information on 403,268 women age 65 or older, together with 10,929 who developed breast cancer throughout a median follow-up interval of 6.three years.
When women ages 65 to 74 had a household history, they had been 48 p.c extra prone to develop breast cancer, the research discovered. For women 75 or older with a household history, the elevated risk was 44 p.c.
Overall, the elevated risk related to household history didn’t seem to differ based mostly on the relative’s age when recognized with breast cancer.
Among women ages 65 to 74, the risk tied to household history was highest for individuals with fatty breast tissue. After 75, nevertheless, the risk linked to household history was biggest for individuals with dense breasts.
Unfortunately, the research lacked information on second-degree relations, comparable to grandmothers, aunts or nieces, researchers be aware in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Even so, within the absence of clear screening suggestions for women 75 or older, the outcomes ought to assist aged women resolve in the event that they need to get mammograms, mentioned Natalie Engmann, a researcher on the University of California, San Francisco.
“If they have a family history of breast cancer, and particularly if they also have high breast density, they may remain at elevated risk for breast cancer well into their 70s,” Engmann, who wasn’t concerned within the research, mentioned by e-mail.
Thinking about household history may imply extra aged women get screened, mentioned Dr. Julie Nangia, director of the Breast Cancer Prevention and High Risk Clinic on the Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.
“We shouldn’t ignore family history in older patients,” Nangia, who wasn’t concerned within the research, mentioned by e-mail. “Breast cancer is actually more common in women as they age, and some older women who are healthy and have a life expectancy of at least five to seven years perhaps should be screened and followed more closely with annual mammograms.”
SOURCE: bit.ly/2o42WOh JAMA Internal Medicine, on-line February 12, 2018.