Risk Factors

While the cause of breast cancer is not known at present, there are many risk factors for women to consider.

  • The number of lifetime menstrual cycles—being young when menstruation begins and/or going through late menopause
  • Never giving birth or giving birth at a later age; not breastfeeding
  • Long-term use of hormone replacement therapy
  • Family history of breast cancer (mother, sister, daughter)
  • Genetic mutations in the breast cancer related genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2
  • Radiation treatment to the breast/chest
  • Getting older
  • Drinking more than 1 alcoholic drink each day
  • Lack of regular exercise
  • Weight management challenges—overweight women are at increased risk for post-menopausal breast cancer

To learn more about your personal risk of breast cancer, take a risk assessment offered by the National Cancer Institute.

There also is a link between breast cancer and ovarian cancer. More information can be found in the Risk Awareness section of our web site.

Spotlight

Visit the Sisterhood of Survivorship page to read “Dena’s Story” — by a vulvar cancer survivor who has shared her story and wise words, and channeled her energy into her National Race to End Women’s Cancer team.

Awareness

Vaccine efficacy against vulvar infection with HPV 16/18 was comparable to the efficacy found against cervical infection 4 years after vaccination, according to researchers with the National Cancer Institute.

Research

The Foundation has published its 2014-2015 Research Grants and Awards Booklet with Applications. Please consider applying to become part of an elite group of physician-scientists committed to the well-being of women at risk for/affected by gyn malignancies.

Education

The next Ovarian Cancer Survivors Course will be Saturday, July 26, 2014 in Boston. For more information on courses, click here.