UVA Mammography Project researchers hope to increase the ability to predict a woman’s risk for breast cancer based on her breast density.
Shaping the Future of Breast Cancer Screening
Current mammography screening guidelines are the same for all women over the age of 40.
But we know that all women aren’t the same: Different women have different risk factors for breast cancer, including family history and breast density.
UVA Mammography Project researchers hope to increase the ability to predict a woman's risk for breast cancer based on her breast density.
Here's what we do know about breast density:
- Breast density is a strong risk factor, topped only by age and rare breast genes.
- One-third of all breast cancers are related to high breast density.
- Having dense breasts increases the risk of breast cancer by up to five times.
How Will We Study Breast Density?
We’ll look at 4,000 women with this clinical trial — 1,000 women with breast cancer and 3,000 healthy women.
This research, which is funded by the Department of Defense and led by UVA radiologist, Jennifer Harvey, MD, aims to help create a risk model that personalizes breast cancer screening recommendations.
These personalized recommendations could change the way breast cancer screenings are performed. Some women may need more frequent mammograms or additional screening methods. Some women may need less frequent mammograms.
The one-size-fits-all model could be a thing of the past.
When Will We Put This Breast Cancer Research Into Action?
We hope to have the breast density risk model built within three years. It will be tested nationally and then available for widespread use within six years.
Are You Interested In Participating in the UVA Mammography Project?
Find out more about the clinical trial.