Growing evidence confirms that abortions take more than an emotional toll on those who obtain them. A new study, completed in January and released at the end of April, finds that women who have had abortions are 180 percent more likely to develop breast cancer, confirming evidence found in a number of similar studies around the world.
The study, led by Dr. Unmesh Takalkar, a consultant surgeon and chief medical director at United CIIGMA Hospital in India and an endoscopic surgeon and fellow at Johns Hopkins, focused on 220 women in Aurangabad, India, and found that the odds of developing breast cancer increased with the number of abortions a woman had had.
"We observed strong positive association of positive family history in first degree relatives ... number of abortions ... and past history of benign breast disease ... in cases of breast cancer at our center," wrote Dr. Takalkar.
The Johns Hopkins study corroborates findings from various other studies, such as one published earlier this year in the Indian Journal of Cancer that showed abortion had led to a 626-percent increase in risk for breast cancer.
And the risk does not lie with abortions alone. Takalkar referenced another study that found an increase between breast cancer rates and the use of oral contraceptives.
Dr. Joel Brind, professor at Baruch College at the City University of New York, puts these figures into perspective:
"There are over a billion women in India and China alone. If half of them have an abortion and the lifetime risk of breast cancer goes up a modest 2 percent, that comes out to 10 million women."
Still, despite the evidence demonstrating a link between breast cancer and abortions, pro-abortion advocates continue to ignore the risks and tout their rhetoric regarding a woman's "right to choose."
Following a significant study in China that showed a 44-percent overall increase in breast cancer among women who had had abortions, a predictable pro-abortion backlash took place online.
One particular advocate, Abby Ohlheiser, who often writes for slate.com, attempted to debunk the study on thewire.com. In it, she referred to the "recall bias" which asserts that healthy women are more likely to deny prior abortions in their study questionnaires than those who have developed breast cancer, as a result of the social stigma attached to abortions. She also claimed that the perceived increase in breast cancer rates is simply a result of "more sophisticated early detection methods that coincidentally gained traction during the post Roe v. Wade period."
Dr. Brind posted a detailed response to Ohlheiser's article:
Abortion and breast cancer: The problem isn’t faulty science, rather politicized science and faulty journalism.
First off, Abby Ohlheiser — not a scientist herself — addresses the issue "from a standpoint of scientific consensus." Consensus — i.e., majority rule — is entirely a political concept. And in fact, significant scientific discoveries almost always go against the scientific consensus (which even scientists call the "prevailing dogma") of the day.
When the subject has anything to do with abortion — or more specifically, any challenge to the prevailing dogma of "safe abortion" — you can safely bet that the majority of establishment figures in universities, medical societies, voluntary organizations, and government health ministries will side with the "safe abortion" crowd. So to get to the heart of such a politically loaded scientific question, one needs to check out primary sources.
If one really examines the so-called "high quality studies" that do not show the abortion-breast cancer link (ABC link), and also the critiques I and my colleagues have published in the same, peer-reviewed journals over the years (since 1996), one can appreciate the scandalous abuse of science that has permeated the most prestigious journals in recent years. Fortunately, over the last 5 years, lots of new studies documenting the reality of the ABC link have appeared from around the world in international, open-access journals, largely from Asia. It is indeed ironic that many of these studies reporting a significant ABC link have been conducted in countries such as Iran and mainland China, whereas the Western journals have largely presented a great wall of denial.
Brind concluded by referencing a prestigious study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute by a team from the United States and China in which the conclusion stated that China was "on the cusp of a breast cancer epidemic." That article did not explicitly name abortion as the culprit, but rather cited "shifting reproductive trends." Brind notes, "This is really code for China's 'One Child Policy' with abortion (and not as a matter of choice) its centerpiece."
Brind observes that despite assertions by pro-abortion advocates that they are fighting for women's rights, they are in fact violating their own alleged agenda. Writing for the National Right to Life Committee, Brind concluded that since the majority of abortions in Asia are of females, "one might start to reconsider just who is waging the real war on women."
Karen Malec, president of the Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer, articulates similar sentiments about organizations in the United States who attempt to sweep the link between abortion and breast cancer under the rug.
"The failure of the leaders of U.S. cancer ‘charities’ and leftist women’s groups to blow the whistle about the [abortion-breast cancer] link shows what frauds they are," said Malec. She said regardess of the fact that they present their agenda as a call for improving "women's health" through "safe abortion," activists promoting abortion around the world would "rather see millions die of breast cancer before they’d admit abortion raises risk."
Malec adds, "They're cooperating in the Obama administration's war on women."
Malec also references a number of other studies conducted in India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka that come to the same conclusion.
Studies also indicate that there are other significant long-term physical impacts of abortion on women, including major issues in future pregnancies and greater risk of other cancers such as cervical, ovarian, and liver.
Likewise, a research team in New Zealand, after analyzing data from a 25-year period, found that abortion in young women is associated with increased risks of major depression, anxiety disorder, suicidal behaviors, and substance dependence.