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Some risk factors known to increase the odds of breast cancer in white women have less impact on Hispanic women, a new study shows, HealthDay reports.
For instance, for postmenopausal women in the study, “recent hormone use and younger age at menarche did not appear to play as big a role in Hispanics.” For younger women, family history and taller height, which normally slightly increase breast cancer risk, did not appear to be as strongly linked with breast cancer among Hispanics as among whites, according to the study published online April 26 in Cancer.
Established risk factors accounted for up to 75 percent of breast cancers in younger white women, but just 36 percent in similar-aged Hispanic women. In older women, it was 62 percent in whites and just 7 percent in Hispanics.
From the article:
Exactly why different risk factors have a different impact is not known, Hines said.
The results also beg the question: Are there other unknown risk factor that elevate Hispanics’ breast cancer risk? More study is needed in both areas, she said.
Jane Delgado, president and chief executive of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health in Washington, D.C., said the research was welcome and timely.
“As one in every six women is Hispanic, it is good to do a study like this,” Delgado said. “The issue is that we know that cancer is not one disease but many diseases, and how it presents itself is going to show great variability by individuals.”
Study researchers suggest Hispanics still follow typical cancer-prevention advice: regular exercise, eating a healthy diet and, for older women, scheduling mammograms regularly.