Breast density is a measure used to describe mammogram images. Breasts are made up of breast tissue the milk ducts and lobules, which may be called glandular tissue and fat. Connective tissue helps hold everything place.
M ost women — and their doctors — tend to think of mammography as a one-scan-works-for-all test. When I turned 36, I had a baseline mammogram. Then, beginning at age 40, I dutifully had a mammogram every year, convinced that it was the best way to detect breast cancer early should it ever appear.
Caroline Ho, MD. The Federal Drug Administration FDA has proposed a change that requires mammography facilities to include information about breast density in letters to patients regarding their annual mammogram. Although this is a change on a national level, Minnesota has been required to share this information with patients since
Up to half of U. This common inherited trait is associated with elevated risk for breast cancer, and it also can limit the effectiveness of breast cancer screening. Fatty tissue appears almost black on mammograms.
Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women. Although mammography is well known to be a powerful screening tool in the detection of early breast cancer, it is imperfect, particularly for women with dense breasts. In women with dense breast tissue, the sensitivity of mammography is reduced.
Breast density is a proportional measure of the glandular, connective and fatty tissues within a woman's breasts. It is most commonly determined using mammography, a diagnostic test that uses low dose x-rays. Having dense breasts is not an abnormal condition; in fact, about half of all women over 40 have dense breasts.
Dense breasts have less fatty tissue and more non-fatty tissue compared to breasts that aren't dense. Dense breasts have more gland tissue that makes and drains milk and supportive tissue also called stroma that surrounds the gland. Breast density can be inherited, so if your mother has dense breasts, it's likely you will, too.