Review article: Obesity as a risk factor for development and poor prognosis of breast cancer
Article first published online: 31 AUG 2006
BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology
Special Issue: Obesity
Volume 113, Issue 10, pages 1160–1166, October 2006
How to Cite
Carmichael, A. (2006), Review article: Obesity as a risk factor for development and poor prognosis of breast cancer. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 113: 1160–1166. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.2006.01021.x
- Issue published online: 31 AUG 2006
- Article first published online: 31 AUG 2006
- Accepted 2 June 2006. Published OnlineEarly 31 August 2006.
- Body mass index;
- body weight;
- breast neoplasm;
The evidence that obesity adversely affects women’s health is overwhelming and indisputable. The risk of postmenopausal breast cancer increases with obesity; measured as weight gain, body mass index, waist–hip ratio or percent body fat. It is also established that obesity is associated with poor prognosis of breast cancer. This review examines in detail the possible mechanisms by which obesity causes poor prognosis of breast cancer such as estrogenic activity, advanced or more aggressive disease at diagnosis and high likelihood of both local and systemic treatment failure. After careful consideration of the available evidence, the author concludes that obesity contributes towards development and poor prognosis of breast cancer; therefore, weight management should be an integral part of any strategy to prevent and improve the outcome of breast cancer.