News | July 06, 2012

UCSF analysis of IOM report on environmental causes of breast cancer suggests way to reduce risk


July 6, 2012 — A report issued by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) last December reviewed all the available scientific data compiled to date about potential environmental risks of breast cancer—factors such as pesticides, beauty products, household chemicals and the plastics used to make water bottles.

Commissioned by the breast cancer foundation Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the IOM report concluded that there was not enough data to confirm or rule out that exposure to most of these factors caused breast cancer. However, the report did identify two factors that definitely increased risk: post-menopausal hormone replacement therapy and radiation exposure from medical imaging.

Now, a special article in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine details the findings of the IOM report as they relate to medical imaging, and what women can do to minimize their risk of breast cancer.

“The single thing that the IOM highlighted that a woman can do to lower her risk of breast cancer is to avoid unnecessary medical imaging,” said Rebecca Smith-Bindman, M.D., professor of radiology and biomedical imaging, epidemiology and biostatistics at UCSF, who wrote the article and contributed to the IOM report.

What a Woman Should Know to Ask Her Doctor
While CT (computed tomography) scans and other forms of medical imaging have revolutionized medicine and can be life-saving, said Smith-Bindman, women need to engage their doctors in the decision-making process and insist on the necessity and safety of all radiological scans they undergo.

"They should understand the risks and benefits and ask their doctor to explain the risks and benefits as well as the radiation burden from the scan,” said Smith-Bindman.

Questions patients should ask their doctors questions include:

  • Is this scan absolutely necessary or can we make decisions about my care without it?
  • Is it necessary to do it now?
  • Are there other alternative tests?
  • How can I be sure the test will be done in the safest way possible?
  • Will having the scan information change the management of my disease in a positive way that cannot happen without the scan?
  • Can I wait until after seeing a specialist before getting the scan?


The article, “Environmental Causes of Breast Cancer and Radiation from Medical Imaging/Findings from the Institute of Medicine Report,” appears in the Archives of Internal Medicine on June 11, 2012.

For more information: www.archinte.jamanetwork.com


Related Content

News | Breast Imaging

September 26, 2022 — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted QT Imaging, Inc. 510(K) clearance to ...

Time September 26, 2022
arrow
News | Breast Density

September 22, 2022 — DenseBreast-info.org (DB-i) announced that it will host the inaugural #WorldDenseBreastDay on ...

Time September 22, 2022
arrow
News | Ultrasound Women's Health

September 21, 2022 — Butterfly Network, Inc. (NYSE: BFLY), a digital health company transforming care through the power ...

Time September 21, 2022
arrow
Feature | Breast Imaging | By Christine Book

Findings from a clinical trial that used artificial intelligence (AI) in an effort to reduce false positives on breast ...

Time September 21, 2022
arrow
News | Women's Health

September 20, 2022 — Scientists from The Tisch Cancer Institute have uncovered a mechanism by which certain breast ...

Time September 20, 2022
arrow
News | MRI Breast

September 16, 2022 — According to ARRS’ American Journal of Roentgenology (AJR), the contrast-enhanced in-phase Dixon ...

Time September 16, 2022
arrow
News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

September 15, 2022 — University of Minnesota Twin Cities scientists and engineers have found a way to improve the ...

Time September 15, 2022
arrow
News | Radiation Therapy

September 15, 2022 — The intestine is very susceptible and is affected by the harsh conditions caused by DNA-altering ...

Time September 15, 2022
arrow
News | Breast Imaging

September 14, 2022 — When double reading screening mammograms, radiographers (technologists) trained for the task ...

Time September 14, 2022
arrow
News | Ultrasound Imaging

September 9, 2022 — Boston Imaging, the United States headquarters of Samsung digital radiography and ultrasound ...

Time September 09, 2022
arrow
Subscribe Now