Arnold Library

Population-based estimates of the relation between breast cancer risk, tumor subtype, and family history.

Welsh, Megan L and Buist, Diana S M and Aiello Bowles, Erin J and Anderson, Melissa L and Elmore, Joann G and Li, Christopher I (2009) Population-based estimates of the relation between breast cancer risk, tumor subtype, and family history. Breast cancer research and treatment, 114 (3). pp. 549-558. ISSN 1573-7217

[thumbnail of Complete manuscript]
Text (Complete manuscript)
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (211kB) | Preview
Article URL:


OBJECTIVE: Many studies that have estimated the breast cancer risk attributable to family history have been based on data collected within family units. Use of this study design has likely overestimated risks for the general population. We provide population-based estimates of breast cancer risk and different tumor subtypes in relation to the degree, number, and age at diagnosis of affected relatives. METHODS: Cox Proportional Hazards to calculate risks (hazard ratios; 95% confidence interval) of breast cancer and tumor subtypes for women with a family history of breast cancer relative to women without a family history among a cohort of 75,189 women age >or=40 years of whom 1,087 were diagnosed with breast cancer from June 1, 2001-December 31, 2005 (median follow-up 3.16 years). RESULTS: Breast cancer risk was highest for women with a first-degree family history (1.54; 1.34-1.77); and did not differ substantially by the affected relative's age at diagnosis or by number of affected first-degree relatives. A second-degree family history only was not associated with a significantly increased breast cancer risk (1.15; 0.98-1.35). There was a suggestion that a positive family history was associated with risk of triple positive (Estrogen+/Progesterone+/HER2+) and HER2-overexpressing tumors. CONCLUSIONS: While a family history of breast cancer in first-degree relatives is an important risk factor for breast cancer, gathering information such as the age at diagnosis of affected relatives or information on second-degree relative history may be unnecessary in assessing personal breast cancer risk among women age >or=40 years.

Item Type: Article or Abstract
Additional Information: The original publication is available at to subscribers only.
DOI: 10.1007/s10549-008-0026-1
PubMed ID: 18437558
PMCID: PMC2692346
Grant Numbers: U01 CA063731-10, T32 RR023256-03
Keywords or MeSH Headings: * Adult * Age of Onset * Aged * Aged, 80 and over * Breast Neoplasms/diagnosis* * Breast Neoplasms/epidemiology * Breast Neoplasms/pathology* * Cohort Studies * Family Health * Follow-Up Studies * Genetic Predisposition to Disease * Humans * Middle Aged * Proportional Hazards Models * Receptor, erbB-2/biosynthesis * Receptor, erbB-2/genetics * Risk
Subjects: Research Methodologies > Research design
Diseases > Solid tumors > Breast cancer
Research Methodologies > Epidemiology > Risk assessment
Diseases > Hereditary Diseases
Depositing User: Library Staff
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2009 23:28
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2012 14:42

Repository Administrators Only

View Item View Item