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BreastCentre Zurich

Breast cancer (mammary carcinoma) is the most common type of cancer in Swiss women. There are over 6,000 diagnoses every year. The causes of breast cancer are changes in the genetic material of the cells, so-called mutations. These cause the cells to multiply uncontrollably and ultimately form tumours. Effective prevention and early detection play a key role in reducing the risk of developing the disease and increasing the chances of a cure.

From age to lifestyle: risk factors for breast cancer

  • Gender: Women have a higher risk than men.
  • Age: The risk of breast cancer increases significantly from the age of 50.
  • Unhealthy lifestyle: Lack of exercise, poor diet, obesity, smoking and alcohol consumption increase the risk of breast cancer.
  • Heredity: Between 10 and 15 per cent of all breast cancers have a genetic cause. Changes (mutations) in certain genes, such as BRCA1, BRCA2 and others, can increase the risk.
  • Personal history: Previous breast cancer diagnoses or certain non-cancerous breast diseases can increase the risk.
  • Hormonal influence: Early menstruation or late menopause as well as hormone replacement therapy after the menopause also have a negative effect on the risk.
  • Other factors: Other factors that have not yet been fully researched, such as environmental toxins from plastic residues (endocrine disruptors) and so-called "forever chemicals", environmental toxins that no longer break down, also have an influence.

What are the risks of breast cancer?

Please do not consider the risks listed above in isolation. They often interact with each other. A healthy lifestyle helps to reduce the risk of disease. Please talk to a doctor about your individual risk factors and have regular check-ups. Our experts will be happy to help you with this.

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