ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Cranberries May Help Prevent Urinary Tract Infections
Ginkgo No Shield Against Alzheimer's
Health Tip: Anticipating Acupuncture
ANIMAL CARE
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Put Your Best Foot Forward Next Year
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
CANCER
Gene Screen May Predict Colon Cancer's Return
Women Smokers Lose 14.5 Years Off Life Span
Vitamin C Shows Promise as Cancer Treatment
CAREGIVING
Babies Born in High Pollen Months at Wheezing Risk
Timing May Matter in Organ Donation Decisions
Diabetes Epidemic Now Poses Challenges for Nursing Homes
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Common Antioxidant Might Slow Parkinson's
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
Firefighters Have Narrower-Than-Normal Arteries, Study Finds
COSMETIC
Health Tip: After Liposuction
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
DENTAL, ORAL
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Toothbrushing May Stave Off Heart Woes
DIABETES
Saliva Test Could Monitor Type 2 Diabetes
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Vitamin K Slows Insulin Resistance in Older Men
DIET, NUTRITION
Cinnamon Breaks Up Brain Plaques, May Hold Key to Fighting Alzheimer’s
Proven Strategies for Avoiding Colds and the Flu
Occaisonal Dieting May Cut Breast Cancer, Study Says
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Warmer-Than-Average Temperatures Raise Migraine Risk
Greener Neighborhoods Mean Slimmer Children
Air Pollution Exposure May Slow Fetal Growth
EYE CARE, VISION
Sports Eye Injuries Leading Cause of Blindness in Youths
Kids Think Glasses Make Others Look Smart, Honest
Eye Problems, Hearing Loss May Be Linked
FITNESS
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
Any Exercise Good After a Heart Attack
Marathoners Go the Distance on Heart Health
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Study Supports Swine Flu's Pandemic Potential
Keep Safety in Mind While Your Kids Are Cooling Off in the Water
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Fewer Heart Attacks After England Goes Smoke-Free
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Fatty Fish May Cut Heart Failure Risk in Men
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Grapefruit Compound Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Family Medicine Cabinet Top Source Of Kid's Poisonings
Too Many Infants Short on Vitamin D
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
MEN'S HEALTH
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
Countdown to Hair Loss
MENTAL HEALTH
17 Ways to Create the Perfect Workday
Mind Exercise Might Help Stroke Patients
Keeping a Healthy Holiday Balance
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Prenatal Stress May Boost Baby's Asthma Risk
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
SENIORS
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
Any Old Cane Won't Do
Laughter Can Stimulate a Dull Appetite
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Caffeine in Pregnancy Associated With Low Birth Weight Risk
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Most Women With Osteoporosis Unaware of Raised Fracture Risk
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Bone Density Predicts Chances of Breast Cancer

MONDAY, July 28 (HealthDay News) -- Calculating a woman's bone mineral density appears to shed light on her risk for breast cancer.

A new study has found that high bone mineral density (BMD) predicts a greater likelihood of developing breast cancer, independent of how high her risk is on the often-used Gail model.

The two measurements together might be used in tandem to better predict breast cancer risk, the researchers said.

The findings, which were expected to be published in the Sept. 1 issue of Cancer, follow closely on the heels of other research linking different aspects of bone health with breast cancer risk. One study presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in May found that Zometa (zoledronic acid), a drug used to treat osteoporosis, lowered the risk of breast cancer recurrence in premenopausal women.

And another study released this spring found that women with breast cancer who have a vitamin D deficiency at the time of their diagnosis were more likely to have a recurrence or to die from their disease. Vitamin D is also critical to bone health.

The Gail model incorporates information on family history, age and other factors to estimate a woman's risk of breast cancer over five years and over her lifetime. The model does not, however, include data on bone mineral density, which is known to be a risk factor for breast cancer.

This study, led by researchers at the University of Arizona, Tucson, incorporated Gail scores and hip BMD information on almost 10,000 postmenopausal women participating in the Women's Health Initiative.

After an average of almost nine years of follow-up, women with a high Gail score were, overall, 35 percent more likely to develop breast cancer. And for each unit of increase in total hip BMD, a woman's risk rose 25 percent.

There was a particularly high increase in risk for women with the highest BMD and Gail scores.

Women with high bone density often are overweight or obese, a condition which elevates their risk of breast cancer and which may well be the common denominator, said Dr. Jay Brooks, chairman of hematology/oncology at Ochsner Health System in Baton Rouge, La.

"This is more information that shows a link in my opinion, between increasing weight, obesity and the development of breast cancer," he added.

But the picture for women remains a complicated one, another expert said. "Even with these additional findings, however, it's still not clear what the precise relationships are between estrogen, bone density and breast cancer," said Dr. Mary Daly, director of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia.

- Amanda Gardner

More information

Calculate your risk for breast cancer with the Gail Model.



SOURCES: Jay Brooks, chairman, hematology/oncology, Ochsner Health System, Baton Rouge, La.; Mary Daly, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president, population science, and director, Cancer Prevention and Control Program, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia; Sept. 1, 2008, Cancer

Last Updated: July 28, 2008

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