Breast Cancer Screening

  • Karla Kerlikowske


There are few non-pharmacological primary preventive measures that reduce an average-risk woman's risk of breast cancer. Strenuous exercise, maintaining ideal body weight, minimizing alcohol intake, breastfeeding, and avoidance of long-term postmenopausal hormone therapy are a few potential modifiable risk factors (Huang et al. 1997, Swanson et al. 1997, Bernstein et al. 1994, Thune et al. 1997, Smith-Warner et al. 1998, Freudenheim et al. 1997, Michels et al. 1996, Newcomb et al. 1994, Kerlikowske et al. 2003, Lahmann et al. 2007, Eliassen et al. 2006, Dallal et al. 2007, Bardia et al. 2006, Zhang et al. 2007, Suzuki et al. 2005, Monninkhof et al. 2007, Chlebowski et al. 2003). Thus, secondary prevention, screening for early-stage disease, is a principal means of reducing breast cancer mortality. Since mass screening for breast cancer involves primarily healthy women, it is important for women and health practitioners to understand the potential benefits as well as the harms and limitations of screening for breast cancer.



This work was supported by an NCI-funded Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium cooperative agreement (U01 CA 63740) and NCI-funded Breast Cancer SPORE grant (P50 CA58207).


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics; General Internal Medicine Section, Department of Veterans AffairsUniversity of CaliforniaSan FranciscoUSA

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