"4.2-fold increased risk of triple-negative breast cancer"


I didn't have any blog posts planned for today, but I just heard the terrible news about Giuliana Rancic and her brand new breast cancer diagnosis.  To me, she is one of the most likable personalities on TV and this is such a scary diagnosis especially since her recent desire to have a baby could have caused the breast cancer to spread if she had conceived!  My mom had breast cancer 10 years ago and it is an extremely frightening thing to go through.

Some of the articles about Giuliana show that everyone is questioning whether IVF contributed to her breast cancer.  The doctors and experts are all stating definitively that IVF did not cause the cancer and I have no idea if there is a link between IVF and breast cancer.  But, I read this article: IVF Not to Blame for Rancic's Breast Cancer and was LIVID!  Look at what the quack-job Today Show doctor told Ann Curry:
 "No," said TODAY's Dr. Nancy Snyderman in a follow-up on the show Wednesday. The hormones used in both in vitro fertilization and birth control pills have been studied and "there's no known cause and effect," she told Curry.
Her statement makes me wonder WHAT this doctor is smoking???  Or is she on the direct payroll for Bayer????  The reality is that Medical News Today.com released a study conclusively found the link: The use of the birth control pill increases your risk of triple-negative breast cancer.*
A new Hutchinson Center study reveals that a year or more of oral contraceptive use was associated with a 4.2-fold increased risk of triple-negative breast cancer for women 40 and under. Longer duration of use and early age of first use further increased risk.
Here are links to the results of the study:

So what exactly is Dr. Snyderman doing all day?  This was big news last year!  Did she miss it completely???  Our doctors simply cannot cherry-pick studies that they want to believe and disregard other studies that don't benefit them.

That's like me running around saying that babies are born through your belly-button because that is what I would prefer to happen.  As a mom who delivered 2 babies, I am an expert in the subject and I know for a fact that babies do not come out your belly button!  I'm not going to run around and tell girls who have never been pregnant that babies come out their belly-button!

Okay maybe that is a terrible analogy.  Let's try the smoking/lung cancer link.  Studies have proven the link between smoking and lung cancer.  Not ALL smokers get lung cancer or emphysema.  But if you smoke, your risk for lung cancer is 10 to 20 times higher than non-smokers.  That is important information to know before you pick up a pack.  Hell - I knew that fact and still spent many years as a smoker.  But at least I was given the information so I could make my decision.

This topic gets me a little riled up.  So many of my girlfriends use the pill and to say I am worried about a 4.2-fold increased risk of breast cancer is an understatement!  When hormones like the birth control pill are served on a platter to our teenagers before they are even sexually active for that inconvenient time of the month, they should be presented with ALL the risk-factors and this should be common knowledge.  Not brushed under the rug by doctors being paid by the industry to stay quiet.

*ETA:  I may have jumped the gun on my analysis of the statement above.  A very wise scientist and PhD student (and my sister-in-law!) who is studying breast cancer emailed me with the following insight:
Do not confuse correlation with causality. The statistics in the study you indicated are largely unconvincing. I believe the study was also ratio of triple negative to other types of breast cancer. So the population was enriched already. Triple negative breast cancer is also correlated with number of births. In all cases, more study needs to be done.
And I agree with her.  I do not know all the facts nor do I understand most of it.  The study is not conclusive that breast cancer is caused by the birth control pill so the cause is unkown.  However, there is a correlation.  This is a quote from Dr. Kathi Malone, the epidemiologist who ran the study:
The strong association between birth control use and risk of triple-negative breast cancer observed in this study, coupled with the scarcity of other such studies to date, emphasizes the need for future research and the preliminary nature of these results, Malone said.
I think doctors should say, "We don't know if birth control pills contribute to breast cancer.  More studies need to be done."  That would possibly be more accurate than Dr.

* I have no idea what type of breast cancer Giuliana Rancic has.  I don't know if it is triple-negative and I don't know if she ever used the birth control pill.  I was simply reading about the topic and the doctor's statement seemed puzzling to me.  I have no idea what caused her breast cancer and I am praying for her full recovery along with all others with cancer.

*ETA: I am not the only one thinking about Giuliana and the origin of breast cancer.  This is a very pointed article and offers only speculation about Giuliana's specific case.  Liberal feminism is in small or large part to blame for Giuliana Rancic's breast cancer

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