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leafmeb t1_jdngzkf wrote

Women are damned if they use birth control and damned if they don’t. Ugh.


mom_with_an_attitude t1_jdreuhv wrote

I am a 57 yo woman. Trends in birth control come and go. When I was a young woman, barrier methods were much more common. In the decades since, they have fallen out of fashion, as hormonal birth control was found to be more effective. But I have grave reservations about the long-term effects of hormonal birth control and it really bothers me that an entire generation of young women are now using it. There are many things we are still learning about the endocrine system; and I am concerned about what we are going to discover once this generation has been on hormonal BC for two or three decades.

There are good forms of BC that do not involve hormones. The diaphragm. The cervical cap (which used to be available in the US but is no longer. It is still available in Europe. It was my favorite form of BC and I am really pissed that it is no longer available here.) The female condom, which you don't see much at drug stores, but which is available on Amazon. (It should be available everywhere; and the fact that it isn't is another thing that pisses me off.) The Today sponge is another very awesome form of non-hormonal BC. It was on the market; then it was discontinued in the 90s; then it came back on the market (I bought some on Amazon a few years back) and now they are unavailable once again. There are good alternatives to hormonal birth control and THEY ARE BEING KEPT FROM US! This is not okay. We should be protesting about this, along with the repeal of Roe v. Wade.


marilern1987 t1_jdqys4f wrote

No, they’re not. The risk lies mainly in someone’s genetic makeup. If you have breast or prostate cancer in your immediate family, you are most at risk. But with no family history, birth control is extremely unlikely to cause problems


toss_it_out_tomorrow t1_jdr46p1 wrote

Not sure. there's nobody in my family with a genetic predisposition with breast cancer. But my mother had been on Premarin after an early hysterectomy at 29 and she was diagnosed with breast cancer at 57. The researchers at the university hospital where her surgeons are (University of Penn) had made the link from the premarin to her cancer.


marilern1987 t1_jdr6a9o wrote

That’s why we have individualized care, versus the care other commenters on this thread want everyone to have


angelicasinensis t1_jdp9cps wrote

I use fertility awareness, natural latex condoms and withdrawal- no babies, no stress and no hormones/chemicals. We even use natural lube made from Aloe Vera!


toucanonporpoise t1_jdpmc2e wrote

While that may generally be a reasonable hormone free approach to birth control, there's also the implications of women using hormonal contraceptives for menstrual related issues (ex: endometriosis, PCOS, severe PMS, hormonal acne) etc. Seems it's just one more risk to weigh against the benefits and this is disappointing news for a lot of women.

Edit - typo


angelicasinensis t1_jdpne9f wrote

A lot of those issues can be helped by lifestyle, diet and exercise. People want a pill to fix things, but sometimes it creates more issues, like cancer.


supagirl277 t1_jdpucl4 wrote

Ew. That’s a very simplistic and wrong way to look at this issue. You don’t cure endometriosis or PCOS with a good diet and exercise. There is no cure, but hormonal contraception can make life more bearable and manageable. I honestly don’t know how you can come into this thread and make this claim when you clearly don’t know what you’re talking about


xxScienceLuvva69xx t1_jdq3nb6 wrote

>when you clearly don’t know what you’re talking about

That's how, the confidence of ignorance.


angelicasinensis t1_jdqthph wrote

Maybe it’s ignorance to think there is only one way of doing things.


supagirl277 t1_jds839v wrote

There’s a clearly defined correct answer to something, but different ways of using that information. But if you won’t even agree that the right answer is even correct, based on co spinach theories and lies, then you’re going to get shat on for your stupidity and lack of even starting off the conversation on a productive note. People can’t even agree on what the problem is.


marilern1987 t1_jdr3a59 wrote

Because they’re ignorant. They have never been sick before, so they just bunnyhop through life crediting their diet


angelicasinensis t1_jdqtg5h wrote

I have lots of friends who manage their endo and PCOS with natural supplements and diet. There isn’t just one way of doing everything.


IIZORGII t1_jdq415k wrote

Neither of these conditions mean you cannot lose weight.

Can they make it harder? Sure. That does not mean it's impossible or even necessarily hard.


marilern1987 t1_jdr34zy wrote

That’s true, but they were not talking about weight loss.


IIZORGII t1_jdr3mz3 wrote

They were though, the reply was stating women can use it to help regulate hormones for weight loss. Then this jaff came in and I replied to them.


marilern1987 t1_jdr6oex wrote

No, they didn’t. you’re the first person to bring up weight loss. Yes, weight loss can help with the symptoms, but it won’t just get rid of the problem. That’s why we … prescribe meds


supagirl277 t1_jds7md1 wrote

I said hormones for PCOS and endometriosis. Losing weight doesn’t have anything to do with my comments on managing these things. Weight doesn’t cause them either


supagirl277 t1_jds7l33 wrote

When was weight at all ever a part of this conversation?


Long_Procedure3135 t1_jdqu2pi wrote

I have a piece of copper stuck up my uterus that makes it angry and bleed like crazy

but I like it better than hormones at least….


ERRNmomof2 t1_jdrbngk wrote

I have endometriosis. Without an IUD with hormones I would bleed, have vertigo, extreme migraines for 2+ weeks a month. The copper IUD would make that even worse. The newstory saddens me.


marilern1987 t1_jdrcjy4 wrote

Don’t let it sadden you. You might not even have a high risk of breast cancer if you don’t have a family history of that, or prostate cancer (they have genetic links).

Birth control can also prevent endometrial cancer or ovarian cancer. So it’s not all doom and gloom - I am reading about how endometriosis is thought to slightly increase risk of ovarian cancer, so if that’s the case, the birth control could conceivably be benefitting you there.

I think what people need to understand, is that just because something is a carcinogen, doesn’t mean that ALL exposure is risky exposure. Birth control is an example of a carcinogen, that doesn’t necessarily place all people at risk


ERRNmomof2 t1_jdrcxqi wrote

Oh I’m keeping that puppy in. I took it out for 6 months and I will never do that again until menopause. I’m almost 44 so it can’t be too far off. Maternal and paternal grandmothers had breast cancer, maternal died from it. Estrogen secreting so no one can use HRT.


angelicasinensis t1_jdqxcvj wrote

I considered the copper IUD but I’m having such an easy time with withdrawal, condoms and fertility awareness.


ChilindriPizza t1_jdo10wm wrote

But the Pill is the only thing that works for my PCOS. I take the combined one for therapeutic reasons. If I did not take it, I would likely have developed Type II diabetes or cardiovascular disease by now. Not to mention PCOS increases your risk of uterine and ovarian cancer. I had a colleague from another department die of ovarian cancer at age 42. I had a friend with PCOS die of uterine cancer at age 51. I know multiple people who have survived breast cancer for many years- including one who had metastatic breast cancer.


Eightiesmed t1_jdo39ii wrote

And hormonal contraceptives lower the risk for uterine and ovarian cancer.


morethanababymaker t1_jdot07f wrote

I'd rather lower my risk of urine and ovarian cancer. I can check myself for breast cancer regularly, I can't check my uterus and ovaries regularly.


QueenKeecha t1_jdpexnr wrote

Manual checks don't work. I am a metastatic breast cancer patient and the tumors were very tiny and undetectable manually. They had already spread to my lymph nodes when cancer was detected with ultrasound and mammogram after experiencing pain.


morethanababymaker t1_jdpf34l wrote

How did you find yours? I'm too young for insurance to pay for a mammogram.


Snoo_24930 t1_jdoytlb wrote

Well not with that attitude. Just get up in there and feel around for lumps. Jk


StarryC t1_jdowi6w wrote

Plus, you know, the risks of unwanted pregnancy in the US today. (Or honestly, wanted pregnancy?)


vanmechelen74 t1_jdqpg7f wrote

I had surgery for uterine masses in 2011 and severe endometriosis with a torsioned ovary in 2016. My gyn decided to put a Mirena to lower the risk of new masses forming and to prevent the return of endometriosis. It caused my some aqueous cysts in the boobs and i started producing milk but i will stick to it.


Long_Procedure3135 t1_jdqu8h6 wrote


This makes me wonder if having a copper IUD increases those two for me then

Edit: I just googled it but didn’t read any actual articles and a lot of the titles said it decreases the risk for cervical and endometrial

That’s interesting


Ill_Ad3517 t1_jdoel1v wrote

Just one of many examples why treatment plans are individualized and existing side effects are just one of many factors. Ibuprofen is linked to stomach ulcers, doesn't mean everyone needs to stop taking it immediately.


marilern1987 t1_jdp37m3 wrote

If you don’t have breast or prostate cancer in your family, you’re probably not at a high risk for developing breast cancer from birth control pills.


toss_it_out_tomorrow t1_jdr4izn wrote

Besides what studies like these say, even if Doctors know about it, they have to weigh the risks with what is more important. Your PCOS treatment is priority because that can lead to other issues itself.

Look at PPIs as an example. A lot of PPIs (think Nexium for GERD) can lead to stomach cancers. But, if untreated, GERD can lead to esophageal cancer


dkysh t1_jdr6zli wrote

> These excess risks must, however, be viewed in the context of the well-established benefits of contraceptive use in women's reproductive years.’


Ok_Award_7229 t1_jdr2jwz wrote

I know every person is different but there are many ways to control PCOS without the pill. I take some amino supplements that have been working great combined with syncing my foods and workouts with my cycle. By the the pill doesn’t solve PCOS it only masks it. But I know it is personal.


finestttttt t1_jdpfncb wrote

Intermittent fasting!! Check Dr. Fung on YouTube he was my bible. PCOS = gone and it's actually a cure for type 2 as well because they're both influenced by insulin resistance... PM if you have any questions! But Meds aren't the answer to PCOS... Trust me.


knubee t1_jdnca75 wrote

Awww well eff me then.


Commercial_Poem42 t1_jdp8qb7 wrote

Maybe not, actually. If you're dropping the Pill.


knubee t1_jdpdfaa wrote

I get what you mean but like someone said damned if I do, damned if I don’t. I can’t win and that sucks.


Johnmagee33 t1_jdphlue wrote

The study found that women who had ever used hormonal contraceptives had a slightly increased risk of breast cancer, with an absolute excess risk of 8 per 100,000 users from age 16 to 20 years and 265 per 100,000 users from age 35 to 39 years.

This means that out of 100,000 women who have never used hormonal contraceptives, about 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. Out of 100,000 women who have ever used hormonal contraceptives, about 9 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.

The study also has some limitations. First, it is a retrospective study, which means that the researchers cannot be sure that the hormonal contraceptives caused the breast cancer. Second, the study only looked at women who had been diagnosed with breast cancer, so it is not clear whether the findings would be the same for women who had not been diagnosed with breast cancer. Third, the study did not look at the specific types of hormonal contraceptives that were used, so it is not clear whether the findings would be the same for all types of hormonal contraceptives.


Yelloow_eoJ t1_jdpxzo6 wrote

Absolute excess risk means an additional 8 or 265 breast cancers per 100,000, depending on age group


dumptrump3 t1_jdnjhhm wrote

Progesterone was thought to be really bad. Until they discovered that the beagle dogs they used in testing, had progesterone receptors that made the dogs prone to cancer.


OuterLightness t1_jdnetvy wrote

How much does pregnancy affect risk of breast cancer?


flaminate_strutching t1_jdnkz2a wrote

Pregnancy and breastfeeding both reduce breast cancer risks.

(and because I know this will be misinterpreted, I’m just stating fact. Idgaf if you ever have kids, I’d rather most people didn’t, and I agree that abortion should be legal)


aiaaidan OP t1_jdnuoxs wrote

Pregnancy-associated breast cancer (PABC) is commonly defined as breast cancer diagnosed during or within one year after pregnancy, and it accounts for up to 6.9% of all breast cancers in women younger than 45 years old.


JMYDoc t1_jdnw5wn wrote

It doesnt cause breast cancer. If a cancer is present when the patient is pregnant, it can make it grow or become clinically evident faster due to the elevated estrogen and progesterone during pregnancy.


QueenKeecha t1_jdpfdu7 wrote

Not all ready cancers are hormone driven fyi


JMYDoc t1_jdphpo4 wrote

Not entirely true. Ultimately all lobular and ductal cancers derive from hormone-positive normal cells. There are hormone negative tumors, but they develop negativeity after multiple generations. Such tumros tend to more often are found in older women, as well.


lynx_and_nutmeg t1_jdqfyuf wrote

The risk of hormonal contraceptives shouldn't be measured against the risks of pregnancy, this would imply that you only have two choices, either taking hormonal contraceptives or getting pregnant. The risks should be measured against using condoms... They're the "default" birth control because they don't have any internal effects.


JoHaSa t1_jdqhk6t wrote

The internal unwanted effect of condoms is pregnancy. Sometimes the risk is ok to take. Sometimes it is not.


Kiwifarmsfan t1_jdnggr1 wrote

Not that shocking. The pill causes hormonal issues; so why wouldn’t it potentially cause more serious harm?


cherry-medicine t1_jdo5cgk wrote

saying it causes “hormonal issues” doesn’t mean anything, obviously it causes hormonal changes because they ARE hormones and that’s their purpose. hormonal birth control actually decreases other types of cancers like endometrial and ovarian by 30-50%. there are risks and benefits to any medical intervention. no need to fear-monger


ItsJustATux t1_jdo8ieg wrote

Women and girls are not adequately warned about the dangers of birth control. Discussing these dangers is not “fear-mongering.”


hikehikebaby t1_jdoe8q4 wrote

"hormonal medicine causes hormonal issues" also isn't "discussing dangers," it's non specific nonsense. Of course work and girls should know the benefits and risks, but that's certainly not what that comment conveyed.


ItsJustATux t1_jdofkly wrote

Tone policing information women and girls need to survive and thrive isn’t helpful. Boomer women use this same logic to “protect” young women from learning the risks of childbirth. It’s not helpful.


hikehikebaby t1_jdofseh wrote

"causes hormonal issues" is made up nonsense that doesn't refer to any specific problem or reference any evidence. I'm not "tone policing." This is just nonsense.


Kiwifarmsfan t1_jdq3vik wrote

It’s not nonsense. When you mess with female sex hormones, their mood is inevitably affected and changed, potentially leading to things worse than acne and weight gain, like mental illness. Yeah. It’s total nonsense.


JoHaSa t1_jdqhbbi wrote

There are dangers in birth control. There are dangers in not taking birth control. Human life is largely about assessing different dangers. Sometimes it is really difficult and we need professional help in assessing the risks.

When discussing dangers of birth control we need to look at the whole picture. Not just some focal points.


TheGeneGeena t1_jdnhllq wrote

I know if it you have migraines with auras on them a lot of doctors will take you off them because they increase your risk of a stroke.


atieka t1_jdpoodw wrote

This was me! I had ocular migraines regularly while on estrogen birth control and my PCP didn’t make the connection. I switched doctors and the second one immediately referred me to a neurologist, who said it wasn’t safe for me to be on that birth control anymore- the ocular migraines were a signal my body wasn’t responding well.


broadenandbuild t1_jdpa591 wrote

So glad they specified it was an “analysis of data” as opposed to “an analysis of peanuts”


throwaway_44884488 t1_jdqsxmb wrote

That is opposed to a true clinical research study, in which a study is done on patients who have consented to be in a research study and participate in a study - whether that's with a research device, study drug, or research questionnaires.


Ok_Discipline8808 t1_jdpz4jz wrote

When I took the pill my liver stopped working. Wild.


Pixie_crypto t1_jdqh8lw wrote

My husband had a vasectomy I have been hormone free for 20 years.


Jennwah t1_jdqrp1o wrote

The pill destroyed my gallbladder and a few of my friends’. OBs won’t tell you that if you have a family history, it could happen. Later learned there was information in the product insert about it.


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BananaSlugworth t1_jdpgf8p wrote

some useful bits from the linked article:

“The researchers estimated that the absolute excess risk of developing breast cancer over a 15-year period in women with five years use of oral contraceptives ranged from eight in 100,000 women for use from age 16 to 20, to 265 in 100,000 for use from age 35 to 39. …

‘These excess risks must, however, be viewed in the context of the well-established benefits of contraceptive use in women's reproductive years.’”


BananaSlugworth t1_jdpgm36 wrote

that’s 0.008% to 0.265% increased risk over those who did not use hormonal birth control


Yelloow_eoJ t1_jdpxays wrote

No, those are the percentage risks of developing breast cancer for two different age groups, who BOTH took birth control. Using hormonal birth control in later life carries a higher risk of breast cancer, but as the percentages illustrate, the absolute risk is still low.


sole_survivor88 t1_jdrsgx0 wrote

I hate this for me. I have a genetic mutation that makes me likely to develop breast and uterine cancers. This mutation also causes me to have a nasty uterine condition and the most common prescripted treatment is BC pills forvever or complete hysterectomy with supplementary progesterone after. No matter what, I am being prescribed the worst carcinogens for my body in the name of healthcare.


monkeying_around369 t1_jdpr5l6 wrote

My mom died of breast cancer and I’ll never use hormonal birth control again for this reason.


ReneDeGames t1_jdq1mes wrote

I mean, make your own judgements of proper risk, but the headline makes it sound much worse than it is.


monkeying_around369 t1_jdqhd3j wrote

I’ve made my own decision based on research and value assessment. This article is nothing new to me or any new information I haven’t already known for literally years. But I certainly don’t need a random person on the internet making assumptions about how I make decisions and telling me how I should live my life. Literally nobody asked you.

And saying it’s not that bad to someone whose literal mom died of the same cancer is one of the most thoughtless and tactless things I’ve heard. My risk is extremely high at baseline.


marilern1987 t1_jdp34gw wrote

We have already known that hormonal birth control pills are a carcinogen. We’ve known since 2007

The most at-risk are people with a certain genetic makeup. If you have breast or prostate cancer in your family, you’re probably a lot more at risk. If you don’t have certain genes, you’re probably not a high risk

Birth control also prevents endometrial and ovarian cancer. So it really seems to depend on what you’re at risk for


Danielsuperusa t1_jdomx1m wrote

Edit: I misunderstood the type of contraceptive that the study is talking about, my b.


Diseased-Prion t1_jdoqcnn wrote

You can’t “use the pill rarely”, this isn’t ‘Plan B’. It’s birth control pills you take daily, or injections you get monthly or other methods that involve routine upkeep. If you do not do it consistently it does not work.


angelicasinensis t1_jdp99qh wrote

This is really intense. 30% like holy wow.


terracottatilefish t1_jdpccv2 wrote

keep in mind that the number of people who get breast cancer during their contraceptive-using years is quite low, so a 25-30% increase may not actually be very many people.

It’s interesting but I’m not sure some of it makes sense. Progesterone-eluting IUDs are supposed to result in much less progesterone systemically than something like Depo-Provera. It seems like every ten years or so there’s a seesaw that changes estrogen/progesterone from miracle drugs to poison and then back again. Sigh. “further research is needed.”


ReneDeGames t1_jdq1in6 wrote

30% increase, which means 8 more people per 100,000 women who take hormonal bc. not 30% of people who take hormonal bc


CosmicEssance t1_jdpyl1k wrote

for Christs sake just use a condom, they work if you use them right!


stu54 t1_jdom7x8 wrote

We should ban birth control, right after we ban cigarettes, asbestos, leaded aviation fuel, chlorinated hydrocarbons, liquor, cured meat products, most pesticides, and tanning salons.


CraigSignals t1_jdoc9no wrote

Use Phexxi. Non-hormonal on demand birth control. Use it only when you need it. Just be sure you use it correctly to maximize effectiveness.