Breast Cancer Risk Assessment

Georgia Breast Care

Breast Surgeons & Surgical Oncologists located in Marietta, GA & Woodstock, GA

Because breast cancer affects tens of thousands of American women each year, breast cancer risk assessment is important. The team of compassionate medical professionals at Georgia Breast Care provides personalized breast cancer risk assessment services in Marietta and Woodstock, Georgia. Find out more by booking an exam through the website or by calling to speak with a team member at the office nearest you.

Breast Cancer Risk Assessment

Why is a breast cancer risk assessment important?

Your doctor uses several different types of breast cancer risk assessment tools to help you learn about your chances of developing breast cancer. This information is important because you can make lifestyle changes to reduce your risk of breast cancer, such as:

  • Changing your diet
  • Smoking cessation
  • Exercising more
  • Losing weight

This information also helps you be empowered, so you’re motivated to stay involved in your health care and any extra screenings or exams you may need.

Which breast cancer risk assessment do I need?

Georgia Breast Care utilizes several different types of breast cancer risk assessment tools, some of which are described below.

Gail model

The Gail model is one of the most commonly used breast cancer risk assessment tools. Your provider calculates your risk by using seven key risk factors, including:

  • Current age
  • Age at first period
  • Race and ethnicity
  • Number of past breast biopsies
  • Family history of breast cancer
  • Age at first birth (if applicable)
  • Number of former breast biopsies that showed atypical hyperplasia

If the calculation is 1.67% or greater, you have a high risk of developing breast cancer in the next five years. In this case, your doctor may prescribe a medication to lower your risk of breast cancer. 

Tyrer-Cuzick tool

This breast cancer assessment is used to determine if you may be a carrier of BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations, which are closely linked to breast cancer. The Tyrer-Cuzick tool calculates your risk using the following factors:

  • Current age
  • Body mass index
  • Age at first period
  • History of ovarian cancer
  • Age at menopause (if applicable)
  • History of benign breast growths 
  • Use of hormone replacement therapy
  • Obstetric history, like abnormal Pap tests
  • Family medical history and Ashkenazi inheritance

With this assessment, if you have a 10% or greater chance of carrying BRCA1 or BRCA2 (or both), your doctor may get you started on genetic counseling. 

BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene test

If your provider at Georgia Breast Care determines that you’re at risk for carrying BRCA1 or BRCA2, they may request a specialized gene test. The BRCA1 and BRCA2 test is a blood draw. 

When will I get my breast cancer risk assessment results?

In terms of calculating risk, your practitioner at Georgia Breast Care may be able to give you immediate results. In some cases though, it’s necessary to come back for a follow-up visit to discuss your risk. If you needed a blood draw, it can take a couple of weeks to get your results back. 

Georgia Breast Care is dedicated to providing comprehensive breast cancer risk assessment services. Find out more by booking an exam online or over the phone with either location.