Mammograms used to screen women for breast cancer can also indicate the patient's risk for cardiovascular diseases. REUTERS

There are many women, who did not pay attention to their health. Sometimes they overlooked the symptoms of breast cancer and after few months they got to know about the disease. But according to a group of researchers, a Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in every six-months could help to detect breast cancer in younger women with a high-risk genetic profile than an annual mammogram.

Although there are many regular activities, which could reduce the risk of the life-threatening disease, the researcher has claimed to find an effective way to identify the illness. The study showed that undergoing a dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) every six months helped "downstage" aggressive breast cancer. DCE-MRI decreases the spread of the cancers to the lymph nodes as well as detected tumours smaller than a centimetre.

The cancer detecting process is more effective for young women with BRCA1 mutation, which triggers the risk for aggressive subtypes of breast cancer.

"Mammograms remain important for most women. But for women at high risk who are getting a DCE-MRI every six months, annual mammograms could probably be eliminated," said Olufunmilayo Olopade, a professor at the University of Chicago.

In the paper presented at the annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, Olopade also mentioned that "For this group of younger women at significantly elevated risk, especially those with a BRCA1 mutation, we strongly support getting a DCE-MRI every six months."

From 2004 to December 2016, the research team have enrolled 305 women in a clinical experiment. All the participants were asked to undergo a clinical breast examination, including a DCE-MRI scan every six months, and a digital mammogram every 12 months.

"This study demonstrates, for the first time, that aggressive breast cancers can be caught early, without excessive recalls or biopsies," Olopade said.

The researchers also suggested that all women, aged 30 years, should test for BRCA1 and BRCA2, regardless of personal or family history of cancer, that would detect mutations and help early action in preventing cancer.

(With inputs from IANS)