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Breast Cancer Patients More Often Have Uneven Breasts

Other independent risk factors include height, family history, age at menarche, menopausal status

MONDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Women who develop breast cancer are more likely to have asymmetrical breasts, with the relative risk of developing the disease increased by 1.5 per 100 ml of breast asymmetry, according to a study published March 20 in the open access journal Breast Cancer Research.

Diane Scutt, M.Sc., Ph.D., of the University of Liverpool in England, and colleagues studied 252 women who were free of breast cancer at the time of receiving mammography and who subsequently developed the disease, matched with 252 women who were also free of breast cancer when they underwent mammography and who did not develop the disease during the study period.

The cranio-caudal mammograms of each group were used to measure breast asymmetry. Among the group that went on to develop breast cancer, higher breast asymmetry was more prevalent than in the control group. Other independent risk factors include height, family history of breast cancer, age at menarche, menopausal status and parenchyma type.

"Both absolute and relative breast volume asymmetries were higher in the group that went on to develop cancer than in the control group," the authors conclude. "Asymmetrical breasts could be reliable indicators of future breast disease in women and this factor should be considered in a woman's risk profile."

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