Your Risk Score

Risk Calculator

The U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI) has developed a risk assessment calculator for women age 35 and over. If you are curious about your risk, try it out. Just click on the calculator to get started!

Breast Cancer Risk Calculator 

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breastcancerstatsworldwide

Breast Cancer Statistics Worldwide

In 2010, nearly 1.5 million people were told “you have breast cancer”

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide. It is also the principle cause of death from cancer among women globally. Despite the high incidence rates, in Western countries, 89% of women diagnosed with breast cancer are still alive 5 years after their diagnosis, which is due to detection and treatment (Parkin, 2008).

The UK and USA have one of the highest incidence rates worldwide (together with the rest of North America and Australia/New Zealand), making these countries a priority for breast cancer awareness. View the map below to see how your country is impacted by breast cancer (pink being the highest per capita):

Dramatically, one-third of these cancer deaths could be decreased if detected and treated early. In a worldwide context, this means nearly 400,000 lives could be saved every year.*

(see infographic)
The World Health Organisation [WHO] has suggested that two components of early detection have been shown to improve cancer mortality:

[arrowlist]

  • Education—to help people recognize early signs of cancer and seek prompt medical attention for symptoms.
  • Screening programs—to identify early cancer or pre-cancer before signs are recognizable, including mammography for breast cancer.

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In the UK and US, effective education and screening could save between 12 to 37 lives per day, respectively:

Country

New Cases of
Breast Cancer
(per day)

Breast Cancer Deaths
(per day)

Lives that could have been saved through early detection
(per day)

USA

527

110

37

UK

125

35

12

 

Your Lifetime Risk, is it really 1 in 8?

The most common breast cancer statistic you have probably heard is that “1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.” What it should really read is “If everyone lived beyond the age of 70, 1 in 8 of those women would get or have had breast cancer.” This statistic is based on everyone in the population living beyond the age of 70. Since your breast cancer risk increases as you age, your lifetime risk changes depending on your age:

Age 20-29: 1 in 2,000
Age 30-39: 1 in 229
Age 40-49: 1 in 68
Age 50-59: 1 in 37
Age 60-69: 1 in 26
Ever: 1 in 8
Source: American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Facts & Figures, 2005-2006.

This means that this poster, should really look like this:

According to estimates of lifetime risk by the U.S. National Cancer Institute, about 13.2% of women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer…which is the same as saying 1 in 7.57 people. And since there is no such thing as .57 of a person, the common phrase is “1 in 8.”

However, after all of this, the chance that breast cancer will be responsible for your death in the U.S. is about 3%. Part of this is by being educated about breast cancer symptoms, knowing your risk and getting screened regularly.

 

 

*Danaei, 2005 and WHO, 2009

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riskfeature

Breast Cancer Risk Form

So what puts you at a higher risk for breast cancer? You are about to find out, with the help of your printer.
 

First, let’s talk about what “risk” means. A risk is not a diagnosis of whether or not you will get breast cancer. Think of a higher risk as adding a few more tickets with your name into the raffle. Some people with low risks still get cancer, while those with a high risk never get it. But knowing you have a higher risk of breast cancer means you are informed, and can talk to your doctor to tailor make a screening plan that suits your body.

Have a look at this handy form below. Print it out and bring it with you to your next doctor’s appointment. When you fill it out together, it will give you an opportunity to tell your physician about your breast cancer risk, and also write down a plan of action. Having a piece of paper to guide the conversation makes it easy to cover the bases and leave knowing what you can do to detect breast cancer. This conversation just may save your life!

Download and print this for your next doctor's visit.

P.S. The U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI) has developed a risk assessment calculator for women age 35 and over. If you are curious about your risk, try it out.

Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool (age 35+)
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screening plan

There are two important people when it comes to detecting breast cancer—you and your doctor.

But sometimes it can be intimidating to ask questions, sometimes we don’t even know what to ask, or how to ask it.

This is where the Risk Assessment Form does all of the hard work for you. Just download, print and bring it with you to your next appointment. Together, you and your doctor can discuss your family history and other risk factors for breast cancer. Then, knowing if you are normal or high risk, a screening plan can be made and you can decide together how often you should get a mammogram, or at what age to begin.

It’s a simple way to get the conversation started, and can also be copied for your patient chart.

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