Women under 35 have a higher risk of spreading breast cancer – study | Breast cancer

Women diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 35 have a higher risk of spreading, according to the first global study of its kind.

Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer, with 2.3 million people diagnosed each year. Survival rates are generally good, which is largely due to screening, early diagnosis and improved treatment.

Until now, however, not much has been known about the risk of secondary breast cancer, where the disease spreads to other parts of the body and becomes incurable.

A meta-analysis of more than 400 studies has found that the risk of spreading breast cancer to another part of the body varies from 6% to 22%. The results of the study are presented at the Sixth International Consensus Conference on Advanced Breast Cancer.

The results also suggest that some women are at higher risk, including those diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 35, those with larger tumors when first diagnosed, and those with specific types of the disease, such as luminal B.

Kotryna Temcinaite, senior research communications manager at charity Breast Cancer Now, said the analysis “provides useful insights into who is most vulnerable”.

“About 1,000 women in the UK die each month from incurable secondary breast cancer,” she said. “We desperately need to learn more about this devastating disease so we can find new ways to improve treatment, care and support for people living with it and for those living in fear of a diagnosis.

“The data show that people diagnosed with primary breast cancer aged 35 years or younger have the greatest chance of developing secondary breast cancer. The study also highlights that the size of the tumor, the type of breast cancer and the length of time since primary diagnosis can affect a person’s risk.

“Secondary breast cancer can develop many years after an initial cancer diagnosis, so it is important that we understand it better and find new ways to prevent it.”

For the study, researchers analyzed data on tens of thousands of women across more than 400 studies from North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

The analysis suggests that the overall risk of metastases for most breast cancer patients is between 6% and 22%. Researchers say the range is wide because the risk varies significantly depending on a wide variety of factors.

For example, women first diagnosed under the age of 35 have a 12.7% to 38% risk of their breast cancer returning and spreading to other parts of the body, while women aged 50 years or older have a 3.7% risk. to 28.6%.

“This may be because younger women have a more aggressive form of breast cancer, or because they are being diagnosed at a later stage,” said the study’s speaker, Dr. Eileen Morgan, of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).

“Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in the world,” she said. “Most women are diagnosed when their cancer is confined to the breast or has only spread to nearby tissues. But in some women, the cancer will grow and spread to other parts of the body or return to another part of the body several years later. the end of their initial treatment.

“At this point, the cancer is becoming much harder to treat and the risk of dying is higher. But we do not really know how many people develop metastatic breast cancer because cancer registries have not routinely collected this data.”

The study also showed that women with specific types of breast cancer appeared to have a higher risk of spreading, for example those with a type of cancer called luminal B.

Those with this form had a 4.2% to 35.5% risk of spreading compared to the 2.3% to 11.8% risk in women diagnosed with luminal A cancer.

Dr. Shani Paluch-Shimon, a member of the conference’s scientific committee and director of the breast unit at Hadassah University Hospital in Israel, who was not involved in the research, said the results were “important” for patients and doctors.

Leave a Comment