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Topic: Density question

Forum: High Risk for Breast Cancer — Due to family history, genetics, or other factors.

Posted on: Mar 14, 2019 09:08PM

Djabi53 wrote:

I’m 66 years old. When I have a mammogram I always ask the technician about my density. She always says it’s not too bad. Recently I read my mammogram reports which say my breasts are heterogenously dense. Does anyone know how concerning this is regarding risk? Many thanks

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Mar 15, 2019 05:10AM Elephant wrote:

Djabi53 - I think that the only risk is that any breast cancer would go undetected because of the density. I have had this every time I had a mammogram so that it was always followed up with an ultrasound. My cancer was not detected on a mammogram, but the follow up ultrasound showed something that a biopsy confirmed was cancer. So in your case, it would probably be best to have a follow ultrasound to confirm that there is nothing there.

Dx 11/5/2018, IDC, Left, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/16/2018 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 2/19/2019 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 4/14/2019 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Mar 15, 2019 08:31AM Djabi53 wrote:

thanks very much for your reply. I don’t understand why the tech says not very dense, but the report says heterogeneously dense. And if it’s so dense, I don’t understand why they aren’t recommending the ultrasounds. I do have diagnostic mammograms with magnification. Confusing........

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Mar 15, 2019 11:00AM Beesie wrote:

Heterogeneously Dense is Category 3 density, indicating >50% - 75% density. This is the most common density category for all women. Density tends to reduce as we age, but even for women in their 60s, 41% have Cat.3 density.

The top density category is Extremely Dense, Category 4, which indicates >75% density. This is the category that is considered 'very dense' and that should always necessitate supplemental ultrasound or MRI screening.

Based on the Tech's comment that your breasts are not very dense, my guess is that your breasts may fall closer to the lower end of the Heterogeneously Dense category.

https://www.ajronline.org/doi/pdf/10.2214/AJR.10.6049

“No power so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke
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Mar 24, 2019 04:51PM sweetp6217 wrote:

As of January 1, 2019, your medical care professionals are required to reveal your density number. I've heard "numbers" and letters of A or 1, B or 2, C or 3 and D or 4. It was determined that my breast density was considered C prior to my diagnosis, or should I say MISSED diagnosis. After cancer treatment, more than 2 years later, my density is now allegedly B. I don't know how that would be possible since not much was removed in the surgery breast and none in the other.

Dx 7/7/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/2 nodes, HER2+ (FISH) Targeted Therapy 7/27/2017 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/27/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 1/4/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary Radiation Therapy 2/21/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 4/14/2018 Femara (letrozole)
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Mar 24, 2019 05:31PM Djabi53 wrote:

Beesie - thanks very much for reading my question and taking the time to reply. what you said makes sense. Ive asked if I should have a 3D or mri and was told no. I have diagnostic mammograms with magnification. I'm thinkingabout asking if I should have an mri if I pay for it out of pocket.

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Mar 24, 2019 05:33PM Djabi53 wrote:

thanks sweetp6217 for your reply and for sharing your experiences. May I ask how old you were when diagnosed.

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Mar 24, 2019 05:35PM - edited Mar 24, 2019 05:37PM by sweetp6217

Djabi53, 55. No MBI available when I was diagnosed and when I should have been diagnosed, IMO.

Dx 7/7/2017, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 1/2 nodes, HER2+ (FISH) Targeted Therapy 7/27/2017 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 7/27/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 1/4/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary Radiation Therapy 2/21/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 4/14/2018 Femara (letrozole)

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