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Wednesday, November 16, 2005

How did we miss this? Friend Linda at "chastity reVisited" tipped us to this: "U.N. Warning: Pill/ Cancer Link":

Women increase their risk of breast, cervical and liver cancer if they use oral contraceptives, according to a July 29 press release by the Lyon, France-based International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), which is part of the World Health Organization (WHO). Other recent studies show the greatest cancer risk is to young women, particularly teenagers, who use the pill.

...According to the Lancet Oncology article, “...combined estrogen-progestagen oral contraceptives … are carcinogenic to humans [Group 1], after a thorough review of the published scientific evidence,” Group 1 is the highest cancer-risk classification. [emphasis this author's]

...it is estimated that worldwide, more than 100 million women — about 10% of all women of reproductive age — currently use combined hormonal contraceptives...

...Ovarian and endometrial cancer risk declines with use of oral contraceptives, the working group also noted.

“Because use of combined contraceptives heightens the risk of some cancers and reduces that of others, it is possible that the overall net public-health outcome could be beneficial, but a rigorous analysis is needed to show this,” the World Health Organization ad hoc group said in their report.

The warning about elevated risks of some cancers when using oral contraceptives is the first such statement from the World Health Organization, but it follows acknowledgement in 2003 by the National Cancer Institute of elevated breast cancer rates tied to use of the pill, particularly among women under 20.

In addition, a 2004 presentation to the American Association for Cancer Research by a professor from the University of Lund in Sweden found a sharp increase in breast cancer risk among young women who use the pill. The incidence rose 17% for each year a woman under 20 used oral contraceptives...
".... combined estrogen-progestagen [hormones similar in effect to progesterone, the only natural progestagen] oral contraceptives … are carcinogenic to humans [Group 1]"

"[The Patch] Ortho Evra contains progestin [synthetic hormones similar in effect to progesterone], a slightly different one than in Depo-Provera, the mini-pill and NorPlant, but they all work the same. Ortho Evra also contains estrogen, so it's most like the Birth Control Pill and the Morning After Pill."

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