The findings of a new study have revealed that the presence of non-cancerous tumors of the breast, a condition known as atypical hyperplasia, could be an early sign of a risk of breast cancer.
Atypical hyperplasia is a condition where the breast cells start growing out of control and gets clustered into abnormal patters. While these tumors are typically benign, they come accompanied with certain risks and genetic changes which are closely related to some early signs of cancer.
The researchers took in 689 women for the study who had atypical hyperplasia and had a biopsy to confirm the presence of these non cancerous tumors. They were monitored for a period of 5 years and it was revealed that within the period, 7% of the women developed breast cancer. Furthermore, as the years started progressing, the numbers started increasing to 13% and reached as high as 30% within 25 years.
Amy Degnim, a breast surgeon at Mayo Clinic and co-lead author of this study, said, “We need to do more for this population of women who are at higher risk, such as providing the option of MRI screenings in addition to mammograms and encouraging consideration of anti-estrogen therapies that could reduce their risk of developing cancer”.
The link between atypical hyperplasia and breast cancer has already been studied, but these findings seem to lend researchers more information about the already known facts and may possibly also help the determine the risks associated.