Encyclopedia of Cancer

Living Edition
| Editors: Manfred Schwab

Breast Cancer Epidemiology

  • Randall E. Harris
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27841-9_6595-2


Breast cancer is a multifactorial disease promoted by sustained heightened exposure to endogenous or exogenous estrogens. Rates of breast cancer vary widely and are higher in developed countries such as the USA and UK and lower in developing countries such as India and China. Breast cancer risk appears to increase with high intake of essential polyunsaturated fats that promote inflammationand estrogen biosynthesis. Reproductive risk factors include early menses, nulliparity, late first pregnancy, and late menopause, all of which increase exposure to endogenous estrogens. Estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) and high body mass increase breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women. Identifiable genetic factors account for only a small fraction of breast cancer cases. Studies in cancer control show that annual screening with mammography after age 50 is highly effective in detecting early breast lesions when they can be surgically excised with a high probability of long-term...


Breast Cancer Breast Cancer Risk Endometrial Cancer Contralateral Breast Estrogen Replacement Therapy 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Director Center of Molecular EpidemiologyThe Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA