How does obesity impact breast cancer recurrence? Elizabeth Tracey reports


Obesity has been identified as a risk factor for several types of cancer, including breast cancer. Now a new study points to obesity as a risk factor for recurrence of breast cancer as well. Kimmel Cancer Center director William Nelson at Johns Hopkins explains. 

 Nelson: What this study did it looked at a cohort of Danish women, more than 13,000 of them that were postmenopausal, they had hormone sensitive breast cancers, and they classified them by their body mass index into healthy, overweight, obese and severely obese. And what they found was that if you were obese or severely obese that your risk of having your breast cancer come back was substantially greater.  :28

There was an 18% increased risk for recurrence with obesity, the study reported, making it one of the most important modifiable risk factors and one that women can control, Nelson says. He says this study emphasizes yet again that obesity is an important public health problem, and one that likely needs to be addressed on multiple fronts. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.