Blog Post

How Ideology is Killing Women

While an alarming increase of aggressive breast cancer over the past few years due to the use of abortion and hormonal contraceptives is killing more young women than ever before, ideologues pushing these "reproductive rights" for women are still ruling the day.

Nurse With Patient About To Have A MammogramIn an article appearing on Zenit, Dr. Denise Hunnell, a Fellow of Human Life International, cites scientific studies from around the world which show that younger women between the ages of 25 and 39 are increasingly being diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer. This kind of cancer is called metastatic, meaning that it has usually spread to other parts of the body by the time it is discovered.

One recent study of cancer rates in Geneva, Switzerland found that breast cancer in this age group increased at the astonishing rate of 46.7% per year from 2002 to 2004.

An analysis of breast cancer epidemiology in the United States, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in February, 2013, found similar accelerating numbers of aggressive breast cancer in young women from 1976 to 2009, a trend not found in older women. While the authors did not cite any particular cause for this increase, they did make it clear that it was due to an actual spike in the number of cases, not because of better detection techniques.

A British study was more forthcoming, Dr. Hunnell notes. Researchers affiliated with the organization Cancer Research UK reported that between1993 and 2010 there was an 11percent growth in the incidence of breast cancer in women under the age of 50. Researchers cited the use of hormonal contraceptives, women waiting until later in life to have children, and having fewer children or even no children.

"The increased use of contraceptives has led to women being older at their first full-term birth or never giving birth, both of which are well-established risk factors for breast cancer," Dr. Hunnell writes.

"We now have at least three independent research groups documenting the exponential rise of breast cancer among young women since the 1970s in both the United States and Europe. During this same time frame there has been a similar rise in the use of oral contraceptives and the incidence of induced abortions. Numerous studies published in medical literature link breast cancer in young women to the use of hormonal contraceptives and induced abortion," Dr. Hunnell writes.

"Therefore, while the rise in the number of young women diagnosed with breast cancer is most certainly the result of many factors, abortion and the use of hormonal contraceptives must be considered leading etiologies. These are risks that are easily modified by behavior, so one would expect the researchers who are alarmed by the growing number of young women with breast cancer would be vigorously encouraging women to avoid both contraceptives and abortion. Unfortunately, this is not the case."

Instead, a principle researcher for Cancer Research UK, the organization whose own report mentioned the use of contraceptives as a possible cause for the increase of breast cancer in young women, responded to their own report by calling for new treatments tailored to this age group to increase their survival rates.

"Instead of looking at strategies of prevention, they are focusing on treatment after the damage is done," Dr. Hunnell laments.

"In the United States there is a similar denial of the potentially lethal consequences of abortion and hormonal contraceptives use. The Department of Health and Human Services has mandated that all insurance programs must provide hormonal contraceptives as essential 'preventive health care' with no regard for the adverse medical outcomes of their use. It has been well documented that there was a deliberate bias to exclude any objection to the inclusion of contraceptives in all health insurance plans."

The bottom line is that young women are developing aggressive breast cancer in record numbers at the same time that this demographic is using contraceptives and abortion at the same high rates.

"There is solid evidence that both abortion and hormonal contraceptives are linked to an increased risk of breast cancer, and this is particularly true in younger women.  Yet too many health care professionals and health care policy makers regard providing abortions and contraception as sacrosanct and above criticism. Those who dare to speak the truth and highlight the significant risks of abortion or contraception are accused of waging a 'war on women.' But this ideological intransigence is costing lives."

She adds: "Those who think contraception and abortion are the lynchpins of women’s equality are wrong. It is demeaning to women to suggest that they cannot be valued or successful if their fertility is intact. It is time to give women the whole truth. Unnatural manipulations of the female reproductive system are dangerous. We cannot allow young women to continue to die because the facts challenge the norms of our contraceptive culture."

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