Written by : Dr.M.D.Mazumdar, MD
Breast cancer awareness can help a woman assess if they are at risk for invasive breast cancer.
The Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool (BCRAT) is based on a statistical model known as the Gail Model, named after Dr. Mitchell Gail, Senior Investigator in the Biostatistics Branch of the NCI Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics
The tool is meant for health personnel to help assess a women's risk of getting invasive breast cancer over a 5-year period of time and up to age 90 (lifetime risk). It also compares the woman's risk with the average risk for a woman of the same age.
As per the National Cancer Institute, the tool uses a woman's personal, medical and reproductive history and the history of breast cancer among her first-degree relatives (mother, sisters, daughters) to estimate absolute breast cancer risk - her chance or probability of developing invasive breast cancer in a defined age interval.
A number of risk factors are taken into account. These are:
Drawbacks of the Breast Cancer Assessment Tool
Other risk assessment tools for breast cancer :