(HealthDay News) — Mammographic density is associated with breast cancer among women younger than 50 years, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, held from Dec. 1 to 6 in Chicago.

Nicolas Perry, M.B.B.S., from the London Breast Institute, and colleagues used data from 282 histopathologically-verified breast cancer cases (age 30 to 83 years) and 317 healthy matched controls. The authors sought to examine whether the correlation between quantitatively measured breast density and associated cancer risk differs with age.

The researchers found that, compared with controls, breast cancer patients showed higher mammographic density up to age 50 years. For healthy controls there was a significant decline in log percent density with age, following a linear pattern, while there was a significant departure from linearity for breast cancer patients.

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“Women under age 50 are most at risk from density-associated breast cancer, and breast cancer in younger women is frequently of a more aggressive type, with larger tumors and a higher risk of recurrence,” Perry said in a statement.

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