We are living in a time when we are bombarded with images of breasts and breasts are getting bigger, but how can we accurately judge breast cancer risk in relation to these images?
Now, we can.
In a new study, researchers at the University of Southampton have analysed images of breast cancer on more than 700,000 women, and found that women who had more breast images were more likely to be diagnosed with the disease.
“These results suggest that breast cancer images are a useful way of identifying patients with breast cancer,” Dr Jennifer Pecan, one of the study’s authors, told New Scientist.
“We have long known that breast images are highly suggestive of a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer, and this study confirms that.”
In the study, the researchers used images of women from the UK and the US, which were then compared to a similar group of women without any images.
They also analysed breast images of people from the Netherlands, where there is little or no exposure to breast cancer.
The researchers found that breast cancers were more common in women with more breast image exposure, but not necessarily those with less exposure.
This was particularly true for breast cancer cases that were classified as non-melanoma skin cancers, which are usually not diagnosed early in life.
In other words, a woman who had breast cancer was more likely than a woman without breast cancer to be classified as having breast cancer as part of their screening test.
Dr Pecant added that she was surprised by the results.
“I would have expected a little bit more of a trend than we saw,” she said.
The researchers also looked at a different way of looking at breast cancer and found the breast images that women had were linked to a greater risk of breast tumours. “
If we are going to understand the underlying mechanism behind breast cancer in relation for exposure, we need to understand more about breast cancer.”
The researchers also looked at a different way of looking at breast cancer and found the breast images that women had were linked to a greater risk of breast tumours.
“What we saw was that a lot more of the breast image images associated with breast cancers, in contrast to non-malignant breast cancer pictures, had a strong correlation with an increased risk of malignant breast tumour,” Dr Pevan said.
She explained that the association between breast images, tumours and breast cancer is often seen in women who are overweight or obese.
“For example, a person who is overweight or is obese has a higher breast cancer incidence and more breast cancer deaths, so if they have a high breast cancer image, that might increase their risk of being diagnosed with breast tumouring.”
Dr Pucan said that it was important to look at how images of cancer were associated with other factors, such as socioeconomic status.
“A lot of the information we have about breast images is based on people’s self-reported self-assessments, so we need more research on this,” she added.
The research was published in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.