HealthFirst

Breast cancer and hormones

11th May 2023

Posted by Dr Michelle Wright

In the second part of the mini-series on breast cancer, Dr Michelle looks at new evidence around the hormonal contraception and breast cancer risk.

We’ve known for some time that taking the combined oral contraceptive pill – containing both oestrogen and progestogen – carries a small increased risk of breast cancer.  

But we didn’t really know much about breast cancer risk for progestogen-only contraception: the mini-pill, progestogen implants, or injectable progestogen until the results of a study carried out by the University of Oxford in the UK were published in March this year. It looked at around 9500 women under 50 diagnosed with breast cancer between 1996 and 2017, comparing them to around 18,000 women without breast cancer. 

The findings showed that 44% of women diagnosed with breast cancer compared to 39% of women in the control group had been prescribed hormonal contraceptives for an average of 3 years before their breast cancer diagnosis. And the study concluded that there was a 20-30% increase in breast cancer risk for women currently, or recently using any type of hormonal contraception.  

Of course, this made the headlines because it sounds like a big percentage increase, as relative risks always do.  

Listen on to find out Dr Michelle’s advice.

Subscribe to this podcast

Related Posts

Measles outbreak in Geneva

Physical Health, Podcast

Measles outbreak in Geneva

With the ongoing measles outbreak in Geneva, Dr Michelle discusses the symptoms to look out for, how to know if you’re protected, and what to do if you are not.

24th November 2023

Understanding diabetes

Physical Health, Podcast

Understanding diabetes

World Diabetes Day is celebrated every year on 14th November. In this Health Matters, Dr Michelle shares symptoms to look out for, risk factors, and how to avoid the serious complications of diabetes.

16th November 2023

Stroke survivor Stacie Broek

Physical Health, Podcast

Stroke survivor Stacie Broek

Part two of Dr Michelle’s interview with stroke survivor Stacie Broek to mark World Stroke Day 2023, this time discussing the work that Stacie is doing to support other stroke survivors. Find our more and get in touch: https://www.staciebroek.com/

14th November 2023

Stay in Touch

Keep up to date with all our latest training and courses