(HealthDay News) — For U.S. women aged 25 to 39 years, the incidence of breast cancer with distant involvement has increased since 1976, according to research published in the Feb. 27 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Noting that evidence from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database suggests increasing incidence of advanced breast cancer in young women, Rebecca H. Johnson, M.D., from the University of Washington in Seattle, and colleagues used data from three SEER registries to quantify the trend. Data were collected spanning 1973 to 2009, 1992 to 2009, and 2000 to 2009.

The researchers found that from 1976 to 2009 there was an average compounded increase of 2.07 percent per year in the incidence of breast cancer with distant involvement at diagnosis among 25- to 39-year-old women, from 1.53 to 2.90 per 100,000 women. No similar increase was noted in any other age group or in any other extent-of-disease subgroup in the same age range. The increased incidence among this age group was seen among all races and ethnicities, especially non-Hispanic whites and African-Americans, and was seen in metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas. There was more of an increase for women with estrogen receptor-positive subtypes versus estrogen receptor-negative subtypes.

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“The trajectory of the incidence trend predicts that an increasing number of young women in the United States will present with metastatic breast cancer in an age group that already has the worst prognosis, no recommended routine screening practice, the least health insurance, and the most potential years of life,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals.

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