A new model for calculating invasive breast cancer risk, called the CARE model, has been found to give better estimates of the number of breast cancers that would develop in African-American women age 50 to 79 years than an earlier model known as BCRAT (Breast Cancer Risk Assessment Tool), which was based primarily on data from white women (Gail MH et al: J Natl Cancer Inst 99:1782-1792, 2007).
Because of the higher accuracy of the CARE model for African-American women, the authors are now recommending its use for counseling these women regarding their risk of breast cancer. It will be incorporated into the BCRAT on the NCI website by the spring of 2008.
The NCI investigators worked with colleagues from the Women's Contraceptive and Reproductive Experiences (CARE) Study, the Women' Health Initiative (WHI), and the Study of Tamoxifen and Raloxifene (STAR) to produce and test the new model.
The researchers examined data from 1,607 African-American women with invasive breast cancer and 1,637 African-American women of similar ages who did not have breast cancer. The factors used in the model were:
• Age at first menstrual period.
• Number of first-degree relatives (mothers and sisters) who had breast cancer.
• Number of previous benign breast biopsy examinations.