Annual MRI Recommended for Some Women at Risk for Breast Cancer

For some women who are at higher risk for breast cancer, the American Cancer Society’s has new guidelines that recommend those women get an MRI scan along with their annual mammogram.

While MRI’s are more sensitive and is likely to show more spots in the breast, it is often difficult to know if those spots are cancerous, and biopsy may be required. This is why the MRI is only recommended for high-risk women.

According to the American Cancer Society, an MRI screening in addition to mammograms is recommended for women who meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • they have a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation
  • they have a first-degree relative (parent, sibling, child) with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation, even if they have yet to be tested themselves
  • their lifetime risk of breast cancer has been scored at 20%-25% or greater, based on one of several accepted risk assessment tools that look at family history and other factors
  • they had radiation to the chest between the ages of 10 and 30
  • they have Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Cowden syndrome, or Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndrome, or may have one of these syndromes based on a history in a first-degree relative.

Extra Fruits and Vegetables Don’t Necessarily Help Prevent the Recurrence of Breast Cancerdiv

It is recommended to eat 5 servings of fruits and vegetable a day. A clinical study of women who ate twice as much as the recommended servings found that both groups had about the same in long term breast cancer survival.

The results were not what the researchers expected, as they thought the extra nutrients would improve the body’s ability to fight off recurrence of breast cancer. The extensive study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Breast Cancer Genes Don’t Lower Survival Rate

Breast-cancer patients carrying two well-known genes linked to the disease have the same survival chances as noncarriers of the genes who develop the disease, according to a study by Israeli and Canadian researchers.

The study was aimed in part at shedding light on whether breast-cancer treatment should be tailored differently for women with the two gene mutations, known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. The results provided no decisive answers on that question, but could provide some comfort to carriers who might feel the odds stacked against them.