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Are you at risk for breast cancer?

No one really knows what causes breast cancer to strike certain people and not others, but a few risk factors have been identified

You have an increased risk for breast cancer if:


1. You are older than 50

  • The chance of getting breast cancer increases as you get older
  • However, even though most women are over 50 years old when they are diagnosed, women in their twenties or thirties are increasingly diagnosed with breast cancer


2. You have a close family member with breast cancer

  • Your risk of breast cancer is higher if your grandmother, mother, sister or daughter had breast or ovarian cancer
  • The risk is even higher if your family member had it before age 50
  • Ask your medical practitioner about genetic counselling


3. You have a personal history of cancer and have received treatment for it

  • Women who have received high dose chemotherapy or who have had radiation therapy to the chest (including the breasts) before age 30 are at an increased risk for breast cancer
  • Studies show that the younger a woman in when receiving treatment, the higher her risk for breast cancer later in life


 4. Your breast tissue is very dense

  • Women whose mammograms show a larger area of dense tissue than those of women of the same age are at increased risk for breast cancer
  • An ultrasound may be required as dense breast tissue can make it difficult for medical practitioners to detect possible tumors

Contact CANSA

Phone the toll free line on 0800 22 66 22, Monday to Friday from 08h00 to 16h30.

Source:  www.cansa.org.za.

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