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Mother died of BREAST CANCER. Genetic chances of cancer?

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My mother died of breast cancer aged 89. A lump was only found 5 months before she died, she may have had a lump for some time. Her health was in decline and a doctor found the lump in a routine check when she developed Shingles. There is no other cases of breast cancer in our family and she has lived longer than anyone else in our family. What are the genetic chances of me developing breast cancer?

Category: Family Physician-GP

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Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian is online now

Expert:  Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian replied 4 Days.

Thank you for your query at Doctorspring.com
I understand your concern.
It is quite complex to predict about the chances. Because in most cases there are multiple factors operating along with the genetic predisposition such as obesity, usage of OCPs, multiple pregnancies, e.t.c
It also depends on couple of genes known as BRCA-1 and BRCA-2. Women with positive BRCA genes have slightly more chances of developing CA breast ( 20-25 % ).
Excluding all other factors, the likelihood of a woman developing breast ca with a positive family history in her lifetime would be between 5-15 %.
Please do not worry, those who are gentically predisposed, hypothetically if your mother was, then she should have developed the carcinoma way before the age of 89. So in her case, there must be a combination of multiple factors. So it doesn't put you on any additional risk.
Hope this was helpful,

Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian
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MD, Internal Medicine - Stanley Medical School
Medical School - MBBS - Govt. Medical College, Kottyaam

Diagnostic Prediction - Stanford School of Medicine
Received Specialty training in Critical Care, Cardiology, Neurology, Gastroenterology, Nephrology from Stanley Medical College and in Endocrinology, Rheumatology.

Hematology and Geriatrics from Madras Medical College.
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