Purpose: In the general population, an early age at first full-term birth confers protection against the risk of developing breast cancer. The relationship between age at first birth and breast cancer risk is not clear for women with a mutation in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene. Thus, we undertook a case-control study of women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation to study the effects of age at first full-term birth matched for other reproductive factors.
Methods: Information about reproductive factors, including age at first birth as well as medical history, was collected from a routinely administered research questionnaire. There were 2,295 matched pairs of women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation included in the final analysis.
Results: There was no significant difference in the mean age at first full-term birth among the BRCA1 (24.9 vs. 25.2; P = 0.10) or BRCA2 mutation carriers (26.5 vs. 26.6 years; P = 0.80). Findings were similar in the analysis limited to cases who were diagnosed with breast cancer prior to age 45.
Conclusion: This matched analysis of a large number of BRCA mutation carriers suggests that age at first birth has little influence on BRCA1 or BRCA2 breast cancer risk.
Keywords: Age at first birth; BRCA1; BRCA2; Breast cancer.