Is rheumatoid arthritis a risk factor for breast cancer?

20 February 2005



I just wanted to pick up on the point you mentioned about inflammatory disease. I have rheumatoid arthritis and have gone on to develop cancer of the breast. I wondered if I would have been considered more at risk?


That's a very good question and I am sorry to hear about your arthritis and cancer. I don't think they are connected. The thing about cancers that are caused by inflammation is that they tend to occur in the sites where the inflammation occurs. For example, people that have inflammatory disease of the bowel tend to have an increased instance of bowel cancer. Your breast cancer is probably an independent event. There is no evidence that I know of that that shows people with rheumatoid arthritis having an increased risk of breast cancer.


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