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HHS HealthBeat (January 12, 2012)

Fighting breast cancer risk young

Teenage girl drinking a beer.
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From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Teenage girls with a family history of breast cancer – or of breast lesions that sometimes lead to breast cancer – have a higher risk of developing those lesions when they get older. And a study indicates the risk of what’s called benign breast disease rises even more if the teenagers drink.

At Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Dr. Graham Colditz saw this in data on more than 6,000 girls followed from ages 9 to 15 to ages 18 to 27. So Colditz recommends they don’t drink:

``Avoiding alcohol intake clearly will prevent the accumulation of breast cancer risk, period.’’  (8 seconds)

The study in the journal Cancer was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: January 12, 2012