Assessment of the accuracy of the gail model in women with atypical hyperplasia

V. Shane Pankratz, Lynn C. Hartmann, Amy C. Degnim, Robert A. Vierkant, Karthik Ghosh, Celine M. Vachon, Marlene H. Frost, Shaun D. Maloney, Carol Reynolds, Judy C. Boughey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


Purpose: An accurate estimate of a woman's breast cancer risk is essential for optimal patient counseling and management. Women with biopsy-confirmed atypical hyperplasia of the breast (atypia) are at high risk for breast cancer. The Gail model is widely used in these women, but has not been validated in them. Patients and Methods: Women with atypia were identified from the Mayo Benign Breast Disease (BBD) cohort (1967 to 1991). Their risk factors for breast cancer were obtained, and the Gail model was used to predict 5-year- and follow-up-specific risks for each woman. The predicted and observed numbers of breast cancers were compared, and the concordance between individual risk levels and outcomes was computed. Results: Of the 9,376 women in the BBD cohort, 331 women had atypia (3.5%). At a mean follow-up of 13.7 years, 58 of 331 (17.5%) patients had developed invasive breast cancer, 1.66 times more than the 34.9 predicted by the Gail model (95% CI, 1.29 to 2.15; P < .001). For individual women, the concordance between predicted and observed outcomes was low, with a concordance statistic of 0.50 (95% CI, 0.44 to 0.55). Conclusion: The Gail model significantly underestimates the risk of breast cancer in women with atypia. Its ability to discriminate women with atypia into those who did and did not develop breast cancer is limited. Health care professionals should be cautious when using the Gail model to counsel individual patients with atypia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5374-5379
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number33
StatePublished - Nov 20 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Assessment of the accuracy of the gail model in women with atypical hyperplasia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this