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Doctors are studying the effect of the contraceptive pill on cancer risk
Many women around the world take the so-called birth control pill to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies. Researchers have now found that taking this pill leads to long-term protection for women from some types of cancer.
Scientists at the University of Aberdeen found in an investigation that taking the pill to prevent pregnancy protects women in the long term from various cancers in later life. The doctors published the results of their study in the journal "American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology".
What is the birth control pill?
The birth control pill for women is the most commonly used contraceptive in most industrialized countries. The pill must be taken regularly and, when used correctly, is considered one of the safest remedies for unwanted pregnancy. The contraceptive pill is a so-called hormone preparation that contains the female hormones estrogen and progestogen.
Pill protects against colon cancer and ovarian cancer
Women who have taken the contraceptive pill during their lifetime are better protected against cancer in the long term (up to 30 years). Taking the pill appears to protect against colorectal cancer and ovarian cancer, compared to women who never took the birth control pill, the researchers say.
Does taking the pill affect the risk of other cancers?
For their study, the researchers also looked at the risk of all types of cancer in women who took the pill during their reproductive years and found that taking it does not lead to new cancer risks later in life.
Birth control pills do not cause cancer later in life
We were very interested in how taking the pill affects the overall balance of all cancers in women. Eventually, taking it could increase your risk of various other cancers. However, we found no evidence of new cancer risks in the later life of aging women, explains the author Dr. Lisa Iversen from the Institute of Applied Health Sciences at the University of Aberdeen.
Medicines monitored the subjects medically up to 44 years
The most recent study led by Dr. Iversen examined about 46,000 women over a period of up to 44 years. Because the study went on for a very long time, we were able to monitor long-term effects of taking the pill well, Dr. Iversen.
Taking the pill actually protects against some cancers
The results of the long-term study showed that if women had ever used the pill, they were less likely to develop various forms of cancer, such as colon cancer and ovarian cancer, the scientists explain.
Protective benefits persist for up to 30 years
The determined protective benefits of using the contraceptive pill during the years of procreation last at least 30 years after the last pill was taken, the doctors say. This means that this contraceptive can still have a protective effect on women decades later. (as)