The key to treating any illness is addressing its underlying cause. Although certain risk factors are preventable, others cannot. For example, physical inactivity increases the risk of developing high blood pressure or high cholesterol. This combination of risks can increase the risk of chronic heart disease. Other causes of illness are genetic in nature, which means that they are rooted in a person’s genes. Environmental factors may also contribute to some illnesses.
Factor and the disease
The definition of a cause is subjective. For example, the cause of a condition may not be a specific event. However, it may be associated with a specific cause. Researchers must determine the causal association between a factor and the disease. In order to make the best assessment of a risk factor, they must critically examine all available studies. The same holds true for associations between risk factors and disease. A significant number of causes and risk factors are associated with breast cancer, so it is important to look beyond the simplest cause-and-effect relationship.
In addition to the causes of cancer, there are risk factors for several other illnesses. For example, a woman’s age at birth, marital status, and socioeconomic status are all associated with an increased risk of developing breast cancer. According to Rothman and Susser, a cause is a specific event that makes an outcome more likely or less likely. A risk factor is a surrogate for underlying causes.