Saturday, November 28, 2009

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday, Friday, I had to go to Canterbury Hospital for a routine screening mammogram.  I am quite sure that I will never suffer breast cancer because :-

a)  There is none in the family

b)  I have never had an abortion and

c)  I breastfed my children for more than 6 months each.  In total, I fed them for about 4 years.  

d)  I had my  children in my 20s.

First, let me stress that having breast cancer certainly does not mean that a woman has had an abortion.  There are other risk factors as well.  Abortion is an added risk factor that women should be told about.

I encourage you to look at this PDF report written in everyday language that goes into the science and political factors involved in the connection between abortion and breast cancer HERE.  Here is a snippet :-

Over the last thirty years, 48 million abortions have been
done on American women and breast cancer incidence has
risen 40%. The pattern has been seen in other countries as
well. Romania enjoyed one of the lowest breast cancer rates
when abortion was illegal, but has developed one of the
world’s highest rates since abortion was legalized. In the
United Kingdom, breast cancer rates parallel abortion rates,
with highest rates in England and lowest in Northern
Ireland. China has had a 40% increase in breast cancer rates
since it implemented its policy of one-child-per-family and
forced abortions. Actuary Patrick Carroll, looking at data
from several countries, concluded that abortion is the greatest
predictor of a country’s breast cancer rate


There is a lot of information and fact sheets about the link between abortion and the development of breast cancer in later life HERE

Cancer Research confirms the protection that breastfeeding confers against developing cancer in later life HERE   Here is a snippet from the page:

The longer the women had breastfed during their lifetime, the less likely they were to get breast cancer. According to the researchers, this was a very striking finding. They made sure that the women's age, menopausal status, ethnic origin, number of births and their age at the birth of their first child were all taken into account. Breast feeding still lowered breast cancer risk by 4.3% for every year of feeding. There is also a 7% reduction in risk of breast cancer for each child born.

A 4% lowering of risk doesn't sound much. But, as breast cancer is quite a common disease in developed countries, breastfeeding every child for an extra 6 months would mean about 1,000 fewer cases of breast cancer in Britain each year.

Reuters has the story HERE and Disease Proof has some excellent, EASY TO READ articles HERE

So, if I am quite sure I won't get breast cancer, why did I go for screening?  Short answer : NHS targets.  My GP is a lovely lady who has been very good to me for years.  They have to make sure at least 80% of women over 50 take up the offer of a routine screening mammogram.  I thought it would be churlish of me to refuse, as I might well have done if she hadn't always been so pleasant and helpful.

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