Breast Cancer Causes and Risk Factors

Breast Cancer Causes And Risk Factors


What are the Causes and Risk Factors for Breast Cancer?

Experts are not in lockstep with each other concerning breast cancer reasons. There is no definite answer why one woman has this trouble and another does not have it. However, it is reliably known that there are some pathology risk factors, which can influence a probability of breast cancer onset. They are the following.


As a woman gets older, the risk of breast cancer increases. Women at the age of 50+ (the postmenopausal period) belong to the risk group, as about 80% of breast cancer cases happen at this age.

Genetic Disposition

If there are relatives with breast cancer or ovarian carcinoma, the risk of breast cancer development is higher. The case of the breast cancer development of two close relatives does not signify that they got the same genes, which made them subject at risk of this terrible disease. The breast cancer is an ordinary kind of cancer. In general, it does not belong to inherited diseases.

Women- genetic carriers of such genes as BRCA1 and BRCA2, as well as of the gene TP53 have a higher risk of cancer development.

Cancer in Past

Those ones, who had cases of the breast cancer in past, have a higher probability to develop it again. Even if it was the case of non-penetrating cancer.

Cases of Breast Nodularity in Past

If there were some kinds of benign tumours of breast, subsequently, women having them can develop cancer with higher probability. For instance, abnormal ductal hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ can cause it.

Dense Tissue of Breasts

The denser the breast tissue is, the higher is the chance of getting breast cancer.

Estrogen Effect

Women, who entered the menopausal period later than usual, are more prone to breast cancer. It happens, because they got a longer-term effects from estrogen, the level of which goes down significantly during the menopausal period.


Women at postmenopausal age, who gained weight, belong to the vulnerable group of breast cancer development. According to experts, such women are under the influence of an elevated level of estrogen, hence, the higher risk of the disease takes place.


There is an unexplained relationship between height of a woman and her liability to breast cancer. Women above average stature are a little more susceptible to the diseases, than women under average height.

Consumption of Alcohol

Alcohol consumed regularly in big quantities leads to the higher risk of breast cancer development. There is an opinion, that only one alcoholic drink per day can be safe for those ones, who like to use alcohol.

Radiation Exposure

X-rays and CT Scans can impact the probability of breast cancer development. It was revealed by the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, that the treatment of girls with radiation to the chest factors into a higher risk of the further breast cancer development in their adult life.

Hormonal Replacement Therapy (HRT)

There are two types of HRT: a combined one and an estrogen-only one. They raise the risk of breast cancer development. In view of this, the combined type has more after-effects.

Type of Job

Scientists from France revealed that women who had night working hours before their first pregnancy are more susceptible to breast cancer development.

There is also a list of jobs represented by Canadian scientists. It includes bar/gambling, car plastics manufacturing, metal-working, food canning, agriculture and some others. As it was reported in the issue of Environmental Health, these activities are connected with oncogenic substances and endocrine disruptors, which can cause breast cancer.

Breast Implants and Breast Cancer

Cosmetic breast implants can precipitate breast cancer development.

First of all, breast implants leave shadows on mammograms and thus, they complicate establishing diagnosis in early stages. Moreover, according to the latest research works, the probability of the advanced breast cancer is 25 % higher if a woman has cosmetic breast implants. Then, the breast cancer mortality rate is 38% higher among women who have cosmetic implants. All research works compared women having these implants to those ones with no implants.

Of course, further investigations of the question of the cosmetic breast implants` impact on the detection and prognostication of breast cancer are required.

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