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Breast Cancer Risk Assessment

Today one out of every eight females will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. But the risk of breast cancer is not the same for all females; it depends on your individual health history and family history.

What is a risk assessment?

The Breast Cancer Risk Assessment will help you understand your individual risk for developing breast cancer. It analyzes your unique risk factors using breast cancer risk models. These models look at factors such as family history of cancer, age of your first period, height and weight, lifestyle influences, and medical history to predict your risk of breast cancer.

At the time of your screening mammogram, the mammographer will ask you a series of questions to complete the risk model.

How do you receive your risk score?

After completing the assessment, your individual risk score is calculated and sent in your final mammogram report to your referring healthcare provider. You may request that your final mammogram report be sent to multiple doctors.

Why is it important to know your cancer risk?

Based on your individual risk, your doctor can determine what breast cancer screening is best for you and if you might benefit from genetic testing. Knowing your risk may also motivate you to make lifestyle choices and healthcare decisions to lower your risk and help prevent cancer.

Breast Cancer Risk Factors

Some factors raise your risk for breast cancer including:

  • Family history of breast and ovarian cancer
  • Genetic mutations, having family members with a mutation, especially BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes
  • History of abnormal breast biopsy
  • Dense breasts
  • A high body mass index (BMI), at 25 or over. BMI is based on your weight in relation to your height and indicates if you're at a healthy weight. The higher your BMI the higher your risk of developing cancer. 
  • Increasing age

What if your risk score is high?

If your risk score is high, you and your healthcare provider will work together to develop an individualized plan for your ongoing screening. This may include additional screenings, like a breast MRI, or referral to a breast specialist or the High Risk Breast Clinic. You may also consider additional preventive measures to reduce the risk of cancer.

The Summa Health High Risk Breast Clinic provides genetic risk evaluation, screening and preventive options for individuals at increased risk of breast cancer due to personal and family risk factors. Our goal is to help you identify your lifetime risk and work together to decrease your risk of developing a breast cancer.

Should you take the risk assessment if you have a history of breast cancer?

This assessment tool was developed for females who have not had breast cancer previously. You can complete the assessment if you have a history of breast cancer, but keep in mind the results are more accurate for individuals who have not had cancer.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact Summa Health's Dr. Gary and Pamela S. Williams Center for Breast Health at 330.375.3717.


Options to Request an Appointment

If your situation is an emergency, call 911.