What you need to know about this scary association, and how worried you should actually be about it!
Chances are you’ve heard about the link between birth control and breast cancer. While a body of research suggests that oral contraceptives can lead to a slight increased risk of breast cancer, studies also show that this risk disappears after you’ve been off the pill for ten years, and still other research found no significant increase in risk.
Now, new data points to the role of estrogen in birth control pills as a key mediator in this link. Women who recently took birth control pills with high doses of estrogen had an increased risk of breast cancer, according to a recent study published in the journal Cancer Research.
For this latest study, scientists at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington in Seattle looked into the pharmaceutical records of 1,102 women diagnosed with breast cancer—and compared the formulations of birth control they filled in the past year with those that 21,952 breast cancer-free women had been filling.