• By Vivien Williams

Mayo Clinic Minute: Can you prevent breast cancer?

October 30, 2018

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Karthik Ghosh says, no matter what your personal risk is, there are ways that may help lower your chances of getting the disease.

Watch: The Mayo Clinic Minute

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Exercise and healthy eating can help prevent heart disease, but how can you prevent breast cancer?

"We always say that there are some things we can't control," says Dr. Ghosh. "Age and family history you can't control, but there's a lot that is in our control."

Dr. Ghosh says lifestyle choices can help lower your risk of breast cancer. Maintain a healthy weight, get regular exercise, don't smoke and limit alcohol. Screening for early detection is also key.

"We are still recommending to start screening mammography at age 40 for our general-risk population. So if you don't have a family history or no other known risk factors, that's reasonable," says Dr. Ghosh.

Women at higher risk or who have dense breasts may benefit from 3D mammography, MRI or molecular breast imaging. And all women should continue to perform breast self-exams to look for changes.

"In terms of identifying risk factors and preventive efforts and early diagnosis, we have hope ... " says Dr. Ghosh.

… Hope for winning the battle against breast cancer.

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