The study, published Thursday in the journal JAMA Oncology, analyzed health records for more than 7,500 breast cancer patients aged 20 to 44 in Ontario between 2003 and 2014.
The study was done over a period of nine years during which the researchers conducted various follow ups with the patients. As well as the usual advice on living a generally healthy lifestyle, there's also research available on the risks and benefits associated with certain contraceptives and whether or not breastfeeding and having children can help lower your risk for breast cancer. These are some of the figures presented during the conference "Breast Journal Club - The Importance of Cancer Research", which today and tomorrow brings together in Naples some of the most important national and worldwide experts on the disease.
Due to the study's large sample size, researchers were able to evaluate across different ethnicities and subtypes of breast cancer.
"Next to a second or recurrent cancer, heart disease is the second leading killer in cancer patients and survivors, so anything we can do to prevent cancer survivors from developing heart disease is very important", said Tochi Okwuosa, DO, a cardiovascular disease specialist at Rush University Medical Center and the study's lead author.
On the other hand, there's been concern that consuming soy-based foods can interfere with the effectiveness of breast cancer drugs such as tamoxifen.
The new findings suggest many women may not need to delay that long to have a baby, said Narod, who advised that women discuss the timing with their doctors. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, and women who have been diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer face a markedly increased risk of heart disease compared to the general population.
The decrease in risk was largely limited to patients with hormone receptor-negative tumors and women who have not undergone anti-oestrogen therapy.
However, that's a choice some women who want a family make, despite the risk of recurrence.
"You get the impression that pregnancy and breast cancer are a bad thing".
For years, people fighting breast cancer and survivors have been told to avoid soy.