A: Dr. Harness Answers the Question

In this clip, Jay Harness, MD, FACS explains alcohol consumption and how it is related to the risk of breast cancer.

I am often asked the question whether consumption of alcohol is a risk factor for developing breast cancer. The answer is yes, it is.

In the Journal of the American Medical Association published the week of November 2, 2011 is an important article from Harvard University on this very subject. Now this subject has been studied a fair amount through the years but I think this is one of the more comprehensive studies to be published.

On our website we will have a video linked to the author of the study and she goes through a lot of the details of the study. But the bottom line of the study is that if you consume somewhere between three to six drinks per week, you have an increased risk of breast cancer of approximately 15%.

Now the average person, without other risk factors, has a chance of developing breast cancer in their lifetime somewhere between 10% & 12%. So this additional 15% of 10-12% is not a huge jump but in fact it is an increased risk factor.

Now what dilemma is that we know some of the benefits of as an example, red wine. So how do we balance the benefits of red wine consumption to lower the instance of heart disease against the increased risk of breast cancer for consuming let's say three to six glasses of wine per week.

And the answer is you really need to consult with your primary care physician because we have to take into account other risk factors that may be in your history such as family history, such as being overweight, such as cigarette smoking, such as never having babies, never having children at all.

So there are multitude of risk factors that go into the development of breast cancer. We have to always remember we don't know the exact cause of breast cancer but we need to keep in mind that in fact the consumption of alcohol between three to six drinks per week is an increased risk factor, but we also need to keep in mind that less than three drinks per week has no increased risk of breast cancer.

What's the take-home message for you? Know what your risk factors are. Consult with your primary care physician. If they are not the answers you need of that source, then consult with a breast disease specialist where you live.

This information should not be relied upon as a substitute for personal medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Use the information provided on this site solely at your own risk.  If you have any concerns about your health, please consult with a physician.

[+] READ THE TRANSCRIPT

 

 

0:00
{\rtf1\ansi\ansicpg1252\cocoartf1038\cocoasubrtf360 {\fonttbl\f0\fswiss\fcharset0 Helvetica;\f1\fswiss\fcharset0
0:02
ArialMT;} {\colortbl;\red255\green255\blue255;}
0:04
\margl1440\margr1440\vieww9000\viewh8400\viewkind0 \pard\tx720\tx1440\tx2160\tx2880\tx3600\tx4320\tx5040\tx5760\tx6480\tx7200\tx7920\tx8640\ql\qnatural\pardirnatural
0:06
\f0\fs24 \cf0 >>> Dr. Jay K. Harness: \f1 I am often asked the question whether
0:14
consumption of alcohol is a risk factor for developing breast cancer. The answer is yes,
0:21
it is. \ \pard\tx2367\pardeftab720\ri720\qj
0:23
\cf0 \ In the Journal of the American Medical Association
0:26
published the week of November 2, 2011 is an important article from Harvard University
0:33
on this very subject. Now this subject has been studied a fair amount through the years
0:38
but I think this is one of the more comprehensive studies to be published. \
0:44
\ On our website we will have a video linked
0:47
to the author of the study and she goes through a lot of the details of the study. But the
0:52
bottom line of the study is that if you consume somewhere between three to six drinks per
0:59
week, you have an increased risk of breast cancer of approximately 15%. \
1:06
\ Now the average person, without other risk
1:10
factors, has a chance of developing breast cancer in their lifetime somewhere between
1:15
10% & 12%. So this additional 15% of 10-12% is not a huge jump but in fact it is an increased
1:26
risk factor. \ \
1:27
Now what dilemma is that we know some of the benefits of as an example, red wine. So how
1:33
do we balance the benefits of red wine consumption to lower the instance of heart disease against
1:42
the increased risk of breast cancer for consuming let\'92s say three to six glasses of wine
1:49
per week. \ \
1:50
And the answer is you really need to consult with your primary care physician because we
1:55
have to take into account other risk factors that may be in your history such as family
2:02
history, such as being overweight, such as cigarette smoking, such as never having babies,
2:08
never having children at all. \ \
2:10
So there are multitude of risk factors that go into the development of breast cancer.
2:16
We have to always remember we don\'92t know the exact cause of breast cancer but we need
2:22
to keep in mind that in fact the consumption of alcohol between three to six drinks per
2:28
week is an increased risk factor, but we also need to keep in mind that less than three
2:34
drinks per week has no increased risk of breast cancer. \
2:37
\ What\'92s the take-home message for you? Know
2:41
what your risk factors are. Consult with your primary care physician. If they are not the
2:48
answers you need of that source, then consult with a breast disease specialist where you
2:55
live. \ \
2:59
Hi, I am Dr. Jay Harness and I want to share with you important information that I believe
3:08
that every newly diagnosed patient with breast cancer needs to know. \
3:12
\ I am a breast cancer survivor. \
3:15
\ I am a breast cancer survivor. \
3:17
\ I am a breast cancer survivor and I want every
3:20
woman to know about personal life, breast cancer treatment and the genomic test \'96
3:23
a test that helps guide a woman and her doctor to the best treatment options for her. \
3:33
\ Pass it on! \
3:37
}
 
Banner

 

This information should not be relied upon as a substitute for personalized medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Use the information provided on this site solely at your own risk. If you have any concerns about your health, please consult a physician, or contact us for an appointment.