Breast Cancer by the Numbers

Numbers Expanded

Breast Cancer by the Numbers

Statistics and numbers help us (perhaps some more than others!) to make sense of our world.

Here are a few of the numbers that come up about breast cancer:

1.       1 in 8

The lifetime risk of a woman getting breast cancer in the US.

For men, this number is 1 in 1000.

2.       232,000

The estimated number of women who will be diagnosed with new invasive breast cancer in the US in 2014. Not including the estimated 62,500 new cases of in situ (DCIS or LCIS) cancer.

3.       40,000 (!)

The estimated number of deaths from breast cancer in women in 2014 in the US.

4.       80%

The percentage of women diagnosed with breast cancer with NO family history! Family history matters, but is only one part of the overall risk of breast cancer. As we like to say, if you have breasts and are female, you are at risk!

5.       40

The age at which the risk of breast cancer starts to increase for women – this steady increase in risk of breast cancer continues up until the age of 80. This is why the recommendation is to start routine screening at the age of 40 for those of average risk.

6.       10%

The percentage of women in the US with the densest breasts, a risk for breast cancer and a complicating factor in interpretation of mammography.

7.       10 seconds

The actual compression time per breast per view for mammography –not great but tolerable!

8.       >90%

The cure rate for early stage breast cancer! Screening with mammography, clinical breast exams and self breast exams is key to finding breast cancer at its earliest most treatable stage.

 Some of these numbers are humbling – others inspiring. We hope this list will prompt you to take care of you, and maybe prompt those you love to get the care they need as well.




Image credit: Numbers by Ianmacm via Wikimedia Commons Copyright Public Domain

Originally published: 3/19/14 on