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Women's HealthEducation Center


Dr Birrell Talks About Breast Density

4 August 2016 | By Wellend

Dr Birrell talks about breast density.  A summary of his key points are below:

‘Wellend’s therapy is a new and very exciting way of treating women with perimenopausal symptoms, and also, at the same time, getting the added benefit of reducing mammographic breast density, which is the number one risk factor for developing breast cancer.’

‘At Wellend, what we do is we use a special program when a woman has a mammogram, that actually calculates, very precisely, the percentage of breast density, and so we can get a number that we can actually then tell a woman what her number is, and what that means in terms of risk,and then monitor it, use it as a monitoring tool for the effectiveness of the treatment.’

‘If you reduce mammographic breast density, you not only reduce the risk of getting breast cancer, you enable the ability to detect the breast cancer earlier, because mammographys more sensitive in that situation, and you potentially reduce the virulence, or the aggressiveness of the cancer. There’s increasing evidence that the increased elasticity in any tissue, whether it’s the bowel, or whether it’s the prostate gland, or whether it’s the breast, any increase in stiffness, increases the virulence of cancer cells. It’s called mechanotransformation, and this concept is something where when we embark on a preventative strategy, if we attack that concept, you will definitely save lives.’

‘It’s a question that should be asked in their 30s, especially with the changing reproductive nature of the woman, and so it should be up their with Pap smears, and all of the other regular things that women look at. What is my breast density, what is my cholesterol, what is my blood pressure, and for planning out a way of dealing with this very, very common problem, because it may be that a woman thinks she has dense breasts and she’s worried about it, and she has a mammogram, and she doesn’t have dense breast tissue, and so we know that her risk for developing breast cancer isn’t high.’