Alcohol Ups Risk of Some Breast Cancers

SEATTLE, Aug. 24 (UPI) — Alcohol — a risk factor overall for breast cancer — increases the risk of some types of breast cancer, but not all types, U.S. researchers found.

Dr. Christopher I. Li and colleagues at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle say the study involved a subset of patients in the Women’s Health Initiative study, conducted from 1993 to 1998, which included 87,724 post-menopausal women ages 50-79.


The study, published in The Journal of the National, finds alcohol increases risk of lobular and hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. Lobular cancer has the potential to spread, or metastasize to other parts of the body, and hormone receptor-positive breast cancer is hormone-sensitive and slightly slower growing.

It is not necessarily linked to invasive ductal carcinomas — a common type of breast cancer that has the potential to invade lymph and blood systems, spreading cancer cells to other parts of your body.

“We found that women who drank one or more drinks per day had about double the risk of lobular type breast cancer, but no increase in their risk of ductal type breast cancer,” the study authors say in a statement. “It is important to note that ductal cancer is much more common than lobular cancer accounting for about 70 percent of all breast cancers whereas lobular cancer accounts for only about 10 percent to 15 percent of cases.”

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