Scientific Panel Finds Few Clear Environmental Links to Breast Cancer


December 8, 2011

New York Times

An exhaustive new report meant to address public fears about possible links between breast cancer and the environment finds evidence strong enough to make only a few firm recommendations, most already well known and none with a large proven benefit.

The most consistent data suggest that women can reduce their risk by avoiding unnecessary medical radiation, forgoing hormone treatments for menopause that combine estrogen and progestin, limiting alcohol intake and minimizing weight gain, the report found. (Controlling weight appears helpful only in preventing postmenopausal breast cancers, not those in younger women.) Overuse of CT scans, which deliver a relatively high dose of radiation, was a particular concern, but the report stated that women should not be deterred from having routine mammograms, which use a much smaller dose... Read More

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