Magazine article USA TODAY

Varied Benefits of Breast Reduction

Magazine article USA TODAY

Varied Benefits of Breast Reduction

Article excerpt

Breast reduction surgery may provide benefits other than a smaller size, according to two recent studies. One was designed to determine whether women who have breast reduction surgery are at greater or lesser risk for developing breast cancer. It included nearly 30,000 women who underwent breast reduction surgery in Ontario, Canada, between 1979 and 1993, linking computerized data with mortality rates and the incidence of cancer cases among Ontario women during the same time period.

"The results show that breast reduction does not increase the risk of breast cancer. In fact, there may even be reduced risk," maintains Mitchell H. Brown, an assistant professor in the Department of Surgery, University of Toronto. Among those who had breast reduction surgery, the incidence of breast cancer following the operation was 40% less than in women who had not had the procedure. Coincidentally, a reduction in risk was seen in lung, cervical, and digestive cancer. While the reasons for reduction of risk are undetermined, Brown speculates that the adoption of healthier lifestyles by patients may play an important role.

The second study demonstrated that breast reduction surgery may offer significant social and psychological benefits for adolescent girls. …

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