Breast Cancer Risk Factors That Cannot Be Changed

Breast Cancer Risk Factors That Cannot Be Changed

Many of the breast cancer risk factors are largely determined by factors beyond an individual’s control. These risk factors are primarily related to genetics, gender, and age. It’s important to be aware of these factors so that healthcare providers can assess an individual’s risk appropriately and recommend appropriate screening and prevention strategies. Here are some breast cancer risk factors that cannot be changed:



·         Gender: Breast cancer is far more common in women than in men. While men can develop breast cancer, most cases occur in women.

·         Age: The risk of breast cancer increases with age. Most breast cancer diagnoses occur in women over the age of 50.

·         Family history: A family history of breast cancer, especially among first-degree relatives (such as a mother, sister, or daughter), can increase an individual’s risk. Specific genetic mutations like BRCA1 and BRCA2 can also be passed down in families and significantly raise the risk.

·         Inherited genetic mutations: Certain inherited genetic mutations, such as BRCA1, BRCA2, TP53, and others, significantly increase the risk of breast cancer. Genetic testing can identify these mutations in individuals with a family history of breast cancer.

·         Personal history of breast cancer: If an individual has had breast cancer in one breast, they are at a higher risk of developing breast cancer in the other breast or having a recurrence.

·         Race and ethnicity: Breast cancer incidence and mortality rates can vary by race and ethnicity. For example, some populations, such as Ashkenazi Jewish women, have a higher prevalence of certain genetic mutations associated with breast cancer.

·         Breast density: Women with dense breast tissue may have an increased risk of breast cancer. Breast density is determined by genetics and cannot be changed.

·         Certain benign breast conditions: Some benign breast conditions, such as atypical hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS), can increase the risk of developing breast cancer.


Image credit: Image by u_vso03d127h from Pixabay (cc by 0)


Author: Sumana Rao | Posted on: October 10, 2023

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