Dense Breast Tissue 101: Information Every Woman Needs to Know

If someone calls you “dense” during your breast cancer screening, don’t take offense! It’s a term used to describe certain kinds of breasts. “Dense breasts” are common and normal, but that condition can make it more difficult for medical professionals to spot cancer. First, a quick primer about your breasts. These amazing body parts are made up of lobules, ducts, and connective tissues. The lobules produce the milk women use to feed babies, and the ducts are the tiny tubes that transfer that milk to the nipple. The other parts are comprised of tissue and fat, the components that give breasts their shape and size. Breasts are considered “dense” when they don’t contain much fat in comparison to fibrous or glandular tissue. It has nothing to do with the way your breasts look or feel, and only a medical procedure like a mammogram can determine if your breasts fit that category. Breasts of any size can be dense. MORE: What to know about radiation therapy What you should know: According to the American Cancer Society, having dense breasts can slightly increase your risk of developing cancer. Dense breasts can make it harder for medical professionals to see cancer. On mammograms, dense breast tissue and cancerous tissues both appear white, and naturally that makes the cancer tissues harder to spot. By contrast, fatty tissue looks black, so white cancer cells are easier to see. What you should do: Ask your doctor if your breasts are dense. Make
Subscribe or to access all post and page content.

One comment

  1. Jennie Dale says:

    If you have the highest level of density, you cancer risk increases more than slightly. Women withe highest level are 4-6 times more likely to have breast cancer. They are 18 times more likely to have an interval cancer. Their mammogram may miss cancer in up to 50% of the cases. Women need to know and understand their category of density so they can be proactive. Women need to ask, “What is my breast density?” Until there’s a cure, let’s find it small.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.