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Study Shows Women Aren’t Aware of Their Breast Cancer Risk

September 6, 2013

NEW HYDE PARK, NY – The North Shore-LIJ Health System announced today that LIJ Medical Center obstetrician Jonathan Herman, MD, will be a featured speaker this weekend at a national breast cancer conference in San Francisco.

Dr. Herman, on Saturday, will discuss his research showing that more than 90 percent of women are unaware of their true risk of getting breast cancer at the 2013 Breast Cancer Symposium.
 
This year, the National Cancer Institute anticipates that more than 230,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and that nearly 40,000 women will die from the disease.
 
Nearly 10,000 responses to Dr. Herman’s 25-question survey showed that 90.6 percent of women did not accurately assess their breast cancer risk. For women, knowing their risk of getting breast cancer can help them seek more effective, timely care.
 
A majority of African American, Asian and Hispanic women surveyed underestimated their risk of getting breast cancer and were less apt to get regular screenings for breast cancer. On the other hand, Caucasian women tended to overestimate their risk of breast cancer, which might lead to undue anxiety, Dr. Herman said. His study found that approximately 40 percent of women have not talked about their breast cancer risk with their healthcare providers.
 
“People know their blood pressure and cholesterol numbers but they don’t have an accurate picture of their breast cancer risk,” Dr. Herman said. “We need to make women more aware of their risk of getting breast cancer as well as the need to get tested and have an open discussion with their medical providers. Early detection is critical.”
 
For more information about breast cancer and a person’s risks of getting it, contact the Katz Institute for Women’s Health at (855) 850-5494. 
      

  • Media Contacts:

    Alexandra Zendrian
    (516) 465-2607
    azendrian@nshs.edu
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