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The purpose of this research study is to investigate whether breast density measured by a safe, painless imaging method (called Diffuse Optical Spectroscopic Imaging - DOSI) can detect the decrease of breast density in subjects who receive tamoxifen when compared to patients who do not receive any drug. If decreased density can be reliably detected, it may help determine which subjects will benefit by taking tamoxifen or other chemoprevention drugs.
Approximately twelve percent of the women in the United States will develop breast cancer, the most common form of cancer affecting women, with 183,000 new cases projected for 1995. Despite the increasing incidence, the age-adjusted death rate from carcinoma has remained relatively stable. Although the reason for this has not yet been demonstrated, this stability may be a direct consequence of early detection and improved therapy. Screening mammography as an early detection technique has been shown to reduce mortality by 23%. Mammographic abnormalities that go on to biopsy show 24% being positive for malignancy with great variability (6-75%). Breast biopsy is an expensive procedure with the risks of anesthesia and surgery which may be obviated by more specific non-invasive testing.
The purpose of this study is to do determine the changes in physiological and optical properties in healthy pre-menopausal breast tissue during the menstrual cycle using Diffuse Optical Spectroscopy. The Researcher can determine 1) how large variations in breast tissue components are 2) how predictable and repeatable these variations are 3) the effects of endogenous hormones on breast tissue physiology.