Sunday, February 04, 2007

Asymmetric cleavage and cancer risk

One of my favorite Christmas cards shows a cartoon drawing of a topless old lady with wildly asymmetrical breasts. "Breasts are like snowflakes," notes the card. "No two are alike."

The problem, however, with unique breasts on the same women is that scientists in the UK have found that such inequality increases the risk of breast cancer. They studied 504 women for a total of 1008 breasts; half the subjects had breast cancer and the controls did not.

For every 100 ml. of difference between one breast and the other, cancer risk rose by 1.5. I'm not sure just what 100 ml. of breast tissue looks like. But if you've got a couple of snowflakes on your chest, it's just one more thing to worry about.

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