These factors are connected to the biology and genetics of individual women, but also to their personal environment and lifestyle.
A woman exposed to risk factors has a higher chance of developing breast cancer (has increased risk).
Avoiding cancer-associated behaviors or environments can reduce the risk of the disease, but most risk factors cannot be controlled.
Bellow is a list of all known risk factors for breast cancer, divided into major (effect) and minor factors:
Major risk factors:
- Age (risk increases after 50)
- Personal history of breast cancer
- Genetic predisposition
- History of benign changes in the breast
- Exposure to radiation
- Familial history of breast cancer
Minor risk factors:
- Late menopause (after 55)
- Being overweight or obese after menopause
- Hormonal replacement therapies
- Late or no pregnancy
- Drinking alcohol
- Late menarche (first menstrual period)
- Physical activity
Learn more about your risk of developing the disease on Am I at risk?