- Question from Jess: My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in her early 40s (just a few years after giving birth to me), which means it is quite possible that the tumor was growing inside of her while she was pregnant. I am wondering if that would have increased my risk even greater (beyond the normal genetic thing) since her diagnosis was so close to my birth? I have not had genetic testing as of yet.
- Answers - Lynn Schuchter No, there is no concern that you could have breast cancer now that occurred while your mother was pregnant. Your risk of breast cancer now is related to the chance that your mother had breast cancer and possibly any other relative that had breast cancer. Breast cancer and other cancers don't travel through the placenta and affect the baby, but in patients with advanced cancer during pregnancy, it will be known within days or weeks or months if the baby was affected.
- Jennifer Armstrong, M.D. I agree, Jess, that your risk of breast cancer is not increased from in utero effects, but rather just from the fact that your mother had breast cancer at all, and that you can benefit from screening with mammogram.
The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Young Women and Breast Cancer feautred Lynn Schuchter, M.D. and moderator Jennifer Armstrong, M.D. answering your questions about the special concerns of young women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Editor's Note: This conference took place in April 2006.
The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.
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