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DCIS patients with high mammographic density face subsequent breast cancer risk

August 27, 2017

"While risk was elevated for both breasts, the increase was greatest and most consistent for the breast opposite to the one with the initial cancer," Habel said.

Of the patients, 164 had a subsequent ipsilateral breast cancer (breast cancer on the original cancer-affected breast) and 59 had a new primary cancer in the other breast during follow-up. The researchers anticipated finding an increased risk of a subsequent cancer in the breast with the initial cancer, as well as in the opposite breast.

Habel stressed that additional studies will be needed to confirm these risk estimates and determine whether information on density can aid in risk assessment and treatment options.

"Information on mammographic density may help with treatment decisions for ductal carcinoma in situ patients," she said. "While it's not a strong enough risk factor on its own, it may be possible to combine it with other factors to improve risk assessment and inform treatment decisions."

Source: American Association for Cancer Research