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© 2005 The Coalition on Abortion Breast Cancer

P.O. Box 957133

Hoffman Estates, IL

60195-3051 USA

Toll Free: 877.803.0102

Local Calls: 847.421.4000

 

response@abortionbreastcancer.com

www.abortionbreastcancer.com

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

Does your cancer fundraising group tell women that the breast is not fully matured from cancer vulnerable lobules into cancer resistant lobules until she has a full term pregnancy?  Do they tell you that combined oral contraceptives contain the same drugs as combined hormone replacement therapy, but in higher doses?  Did they warn you about these risks when the evidence was available in the mid-1980s?

 

It’s not hard to understand why they aren’t telling women the truth!  Some groups are led by feminists who previously worked for Planned Parenthood, the National Abortion Action League or the American Civil Liberties Union.  How would it affect donations if they told women that their abortions have caused them to develop breast cancer? 

 

Here is some basic information that the cancer fundraising industry and the abortion industry don’t want you to have.

 

1) How many breast cancer risks are associated with abortion and what are those risks?

 

2) How many medical organizations acknowledge that abortion is independently linked to breast cancer and what is the evidence that supports this effect?

 

3) What is a breast lobule?

 

4) What evidence is available showing that the female hormone estrogen is a carcinogen?

 

5) Why do women who have more menstrual cycles during their lives have a higher breast cancer risk?

 

6) Do combined oral contraceptives and combined hormone replacement therapy increase breast cancer risk?  If so, is the biological reason for such a link the same as the reason for an abortion-cancer link?

 

7) Why does increased childbearing, starting before age 24, significantly decrease breast cancer risk; but abortion, childlessness, small family size, and delayed first full term pregnancy increase risk?

 

8) Do miscarriages increase breast cancer risk?

 

9) When does the most cancer vulnerable time in a woman’s life take place?

 

10)  Does a premature birth before 32 weeks of pregnancy increase risk?

 

11) Why does breastfeeding reduce breast cancer risk?

 

12) If a woman is pregnant and has breast cancer or gets pregnant after breast cancer, is she more likely to be cured if she carries the baby to term instead of choosing an abortion?

 

13) Do nations that have high abortion rates - especially those that have a high prevalence of abortion before the birth of a first child - also have high breast cancer rates?

 

14) How do female breast cancer rates in Ireland, where abortion is illegal, compare to that of American rates? Do U.S. breast cancer statistics show that the Roe v. Wade generation is experiencing more breast cancers than their mothers and grandmothers?

 

15) Did other researchers predict that an increased number of breast cancer cases would result from abortion?

 

16) At what age are most breast cancers diagnosed and when can the U.S. expect that the worst of the breast cancer epidemic will occur?

 

17) Chinese government officials forcibly abort women who are illegally pregnant after the birth of a first child.  Don’t Chinese women have higher breast cancer rates?

 

18) What does the animal research show?

 

19) What epidemiological research has been conducted showing that abortion increases breast cancer risk?

 

20) I know that abortion industry experts concede that women who have abortions lose the risk-reducing benefit of childbearing. However, apart from that effect, aren’t there studies showing that an abortion raises risk very little or not at all, in comparison to not having had that pregnancy?

 

21) What is report bias?

 

22) Why do experts say they are reluctant to publicly acknowledge the abortion-breast cancer link?

 

23) Have any women sued their abortion doctors for failing to disclose the breast cancer risks of abortion?

 

24) What comparisons can be drawn between the abortion industry’s and the tobacco industry’s cover-ups of links to cancer?

 

Answers:

 

1. How many breast cancer risks are associated with abortion and what are those risks?

 

Two breast cancer risks are associated with abortion.  All experts agree that increased childbearing, starting at a younger age, and increased duration of breastfeeding significantly reduce breast cancer risk. Cancer fundraising businesses recognize that the following factors raise a woman’s risk for breast cancer: 1) Childlessness; 2) Small family size; 3) Little or no breastfeeding; and 4) Having a late first full term pregnancy.

 

There can be no question that abortion contributes to the breast cancer rates of all nations where the procedure is accessible.  Few experts, however, possess either the intellectual honesty or the political courage to acknowledge that abortion has anything to do with the loss of the protective effect - unless, of course, they are compelled to testify under oath.

 

Even an expert witness for the Center for Reproductive Rights, Dr. Lynn Rosenberg of Boston Medical School, was compelled to agree with this medical fact while under oath: "A woman who finds herself pregnant at age 15 will have a higher breast cancer risk if she chooses to abort that pregnancy than if she carries the pregnancy to term, correct?" [1]

 

Scientists debate only one of the breast cancer risks associated with abortion - the question of an independent link.  In other words, does an abortion leave a woman with more cancer vulnerable breast lobules than she had before she became pregnant?

 

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2) How many medical organizations acknowledge that abortion is independently linked to breast cancer and what is the evidence that supports this effect?

 

As of October, 2006, eight medical organizations acknowledge that abortion increases a woman’s risk in this way.  Most of the recent epidemiological research examines only the debated risk - the effect of the independent link.  Most of the recent research omits the effect of the first risk (the loss of the protective effect of childbearing) because it is already accepted as a well-established fact in the medical literature. 

 

An overwhelming majority of the epidemiological studies support an independent link.  Seventy epidemiological studies dating from 1957 have been conducted, and approximately 80% report a correlation between having an abortion and increased breast cancer risk.  Animal research and considerable biological evidence also support a link. Even the most zealous opponents of the abortion-cancer link agree that the biological reasons for it are physiologically correct.  No scientist has ever refuted or even challenged the biological explanation.

 

Considering the sheer extent of the evidence that has accumulated over the last half-century, why didn’t the cancer fundraising at least warn women about the existence of this research, as well as the fact that abortion would result in the loss of the protective effect of childbearing?

 

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3) What is a breast lobule?

 

Breast tissue is made of lobules.  A lobule is a unit of breast tissue that contains a milk duct and some milk producing glands.

 

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4) What evidence is available showing that the female hormone estrogen is a carcinogen?

 

Steroidal estrogens were recently added to the U.S. list of "known carcinogens" compiled by the U.S. National Toxicology Advisory Panel. [2]  Michelle Medinsky, a member of the National Toxicology Program Advisory Committee, said that the committee added estrogen to its list of carcinogens because physicians weren't warning women of the cancer risks.

 

According to an article in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, doctors have been slow to recognize the harmful effects of estrogen. Dr. David Longfellow, head of the Chemical and Physical Carcinogenesis Branch at the National Cancer Institute complained that "It’s been an uphill battle to convince the mainstream that estrogen initiates cancer by damaging DNA." [3]

 

The World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes combined oral contraceptives and combined menopausal therapy as "carcinogenic to humans." [4,5] The WHO reported that combined oral contraceptives increase the incidence of cancers of the liver, breast and cervix; and combined menopausal therapy increases the risk of endometrial and breast cancers. Both drugs contain steroidal estrogens and progesterone.

 

You can read more information about the WHO’s report after the question below concerning combined oral contraceptives and combined hormone replacement therapy.

 

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5) Why do women who have more menstrual cycles during their lives have a higher breast cancer risk?

 

During every monthly menstrual cycle, estrogen peaks just before ovulation. Estrogen is a female hormone and a known carcinogen (an agent that causes cancer). Estrogen stimulates the lobules in the breasts during every menstrual cycle.  Estrogen, especially while it is in the presence of the female hormone, progesterone, causes breast tissue to grow and can cause mutations. Estrogen can also initiate cancer by directly damaging the DNA.  Overexposure to estrogen is connected with the development of most breast cancers.

 

For these reasons, women who have more menstrual cycles during their lives, especially before the birth of a first child, have a higher breast cancer risk.  Women, who start menstruating early before age 12 or go into menopause late after age 55, have more menstrual cycles and a higher breast cancer risk.

 

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6) Do combined oral contraceptives and combined hormone replacement therapy increase breast cancer risk?  If so, is the biological reason for such a link the same as the reason for an abortion-cancer link?

 

Yes to both questions.  The World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Agency for Research on Cancer reviewed the research on drugs that contain estrogen and progestagen and classified the drugs as “Group 1” carcinogens. [4,5] http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/news/050831/index.htm

 

According to the WHO, combined oral contraceptives (COCs) raise risk for cancers of the breast, liver and cervix.  They reduce risk for endometrial and ovarian cancers, but more than two times as many American women die of the first group of cancers than the second group. COCs can be delivered by transdermal patch, vaginal ring, orally, by injection or as an implant.  Combined hormone replacement therapy (HRT) raises risk for breast and endometrial cancers. 

 

These facts provide support for an abortion-breast cancer link because the biological basis for all three risks is the same.  Unfortunately, the evidence was clearly available for all three risks by the mid-1980s, but women weren’t informed.  In 1988, Brian Henderson and his colleagues published a paper entitled, “Estrogens as a cause of human cancer,” and they explained: 

 

"Recently, we found that a first-trimester abortion, whether spontaneous or induced, before the first full-term pregnancy is actually associated with an increase in the risk of breast cancer." [6]

 

It was not until 2002 that millions of women were warned about the breast cancer risks of using combined HRT.  Women have not been told that COCs and combined HRT contain the same kind of drugs and that COCs contain even higher doses. Many women, therefore, have been kept in the dark about the cancer risks of COCs.

 

The 1991 edition of The Breast by Bland and Copeland, an authoritative medical text used by breast disease specialists, provided documentation of a breast cancer risk for users of oral contraceptives.  In its 1998 edition of the text, the authors acknowledged an abortion-breast cancer link. [7]

 

Teenagers are often treated with oral contraceptives for minor complaints, i.e. for acne or when they have irregular menstrual periods. Having irregular periods is a desirable thing. It means the teenager will have fewer menstrual periods, less estrogen exposure and a reduced breast cancer risk.

 

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7) Why does increased childbearing, starting before age 24, significantly decrease breast cancer risk; but abortion, childlessness, small family size, and delayed first full term pregnancy increase risk?

 

The breast is the only female organ that is not mature at birth.  The breast does not fully mature into cancer-resistant lobules until during the last eight weeks of a full term pregnancy.  [8]

 

The childless woman has immature, cancer susceptible Type 1 and 2 breast lobules, but the woman who has a full term pregnancy matures her breast lobules into cancer-resistant Type 3 and 4 lobules. (View breast tissue slides here: http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/dear_doctor/graphics/index.htm)

 

About 90% of all breast cancers develop in Type 1 and 2 lobules. During every monthly menstrual cycle, the woman is exposed to estrogen, a female hormone.  Estrogen stimulates her cancer vulnerable, Type 1 and 2 lobules, during every cycle. Estrogen is a carcinogen, an agent that causes cancer. 

 

Only 8-10 percent of all breast cancers develop because of an inherited faulty gene.  The other 90% of breast cancers occur because of the effects of the hormone estrogen, a recognized carcinogen, on breast lobules that are immature and cancer vulnerable. 

 

At puberty, estrogen levels rise and cause the breast tissue to develop into a system of immature, cancer-vulnerable Type 1 and 2 lobules.  About 80% of all breast cancers are invasive ductal cancers that form in Type 1 lobules.  Ten percent of all breast cancers are lobular cancers that arise in Type 2 lobules.

 

During a normal pregnancy (not most first trimester miscarriages), the breasts grow because estrogen stimulates the lobules to multiply.  The ovaries begin producing extra estrogen within a few days after conception.  By the end of the first trimester of pregnancy, estrogen has increased 2000% - to a level more than six times higher than it ever gets in the non-pregnant state.

 

During the last eight weeks of a full term pregnancy, another process called “differentiation” protects the woman from the harmful effects of estrogen.  Differentiation matures the breast tissue into cancer-resistant Type 3 lobules.  After birth, the lobules fill with milk, and they are called Type 4 lobules.  Type 4 lobules are also resistant to cancer.

 

If the woman gives birth at full term, she will be left with more cancer-resistant lobules than she had before her pregnancy began. More than 70% of her lobules are cancer resistant Type 3 lobules.  By contrast, when she was childless, over 70% of her lobules were Type 1 lobules. [9,10,11]

 

If the childless woman has an abortion, then she increases her breast cancer risk in two ways.  She misses the third trimester process that would have matured her breast lobules into cancer-resistant lobules at an earlier age (the protective effect of childbearing). She is also left with more cancer vulnerable Types 1 and 2 breast lobules than she had before she became pregnant (the independent link). She's left with more places for cancer to start. Cancer is a disease in which cell multiplication is out of control, and there is no mechanism that turns it off.

 

The more children the woman has, the more cancer resistant Type 3 lobules she acquires.  For these reasons, women with larger families reduce their statistical odds of developing breast cancer.

 

The earlier she has her first full term pregnancy, the sooner she acquires cancer-resistant tissue, and the lower her breast cancer risk is. (The Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer supports abstinence before marriage and encourages an early first birth among married women.  The already pregnant woman – married or not - has a right to know that an abortion will cause her to lose an opportunity to acquire cancer resistant breast tissue.)

 

In the British journal Lancet, Oxford scientists Valerie Beral and her colleagues reviewed 47 studies conducted in 30 countries and concluded that increased childbearing and increased duration of breastfeeding would reduce breast cancer rates by over 50% in developed nations. [12]

 

Clearly, it is dishonest and seriously unethical for cancer fundraising businesses, like the American Cancer Society and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, to deny that abortion is associated with increased breast cancer risk, while at the same time claiming that childbearing protects women from breast cancer.  If they really cared more about protecting women’s health than raising money, they would at least warn women that abortion deprives them of the risk-reducing benefit of childbearing.

 

To learn more about the biological reasons for an independent link between abortion and breast cancer and the research supporting it, see this article in the medical journal Imago Hominis:

http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/Lanfranchi060201.pdf

 

Or see the booklet, Breast Cancer Risks and Prevention, at: http://www.bcpinstitute.org/booklet3.htm

 

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8) Do miscarriages increase breast cancer risk?

 

Most miscarriages are first trimester miscarriages.  These are abnormal pregnancies, and they do not increase breast cancer risk.  In most cases, such pregnancies do not involve sufficient hormone levels to maintain the pregnancy.  After a miscarriage, women will frequently notice that they didn’t “feel pregnant.”  In other words, their breasts did not grow and were not sore; and the women didn’t feel nauseous or tired, etc.

 

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9) When does the most cancer vulnerable time in a woman’s life take place?

 

Because the childless woman has cancer vulnerable Type 1 and 2 lobules, the most cancer vulnerable time in her life takes place between the onset of menstruation and the birth of a first child (a full term pregnancy).

 

During every menstrual cycle, women are exposed to a peak of estrogen before they ovulate.  Estrogen is a female hormone, and it is considered a carcinogen.  Estrogen stimulates the woman’s Type 1 and 2 lobules during every cycle.  Therefore, the more menstrual cycles she has, especially before the birth of a first child, the greater her risk is.  The woman who remains childless throughout her life experiences a lifetime of uninterrupted menstrual cycles.

 

The worst time for a woman to use hormonal contraceptives or have an abortion is before the birth of a first child.

 

Other evidence supports this statement.  For instance, Dr. Angela Lanfranchi has commented that radiation exposure does the most harm to breast tissue if it takes place in an adolescent’s breast tissue that is immature and still developing.  After the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, breast cancers formed in childless teenagers, but not post menopausal women.

 

Lanfranchi noted that childless teenagers who smoke cigarettes, expose themselves to benzopyrenes, which can damage DNA.  Smoking increases their breast cancer risk up to 600%, but post menopausal women who have had children are not affected in this way. [13]

 

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10) Does a premature birth before 32 weeks of pregnancy increase risk?

 

Yes.  A premature birth before 32 weeks of pregnancy increases risk for the same reasons that an abortion raises breast cancer risk. A premature birth is biologically the same event as an abortion, although the mother's intentions differ. 

 

The breast is the only female organ that is not mature at birth.  The breast does not fully mature into cancer-resistant lobules until during the last eight weeks of a full term pregnancy.

 

The woman who has either a premature birth before 32 weeks of pregnancy or an abortion is overexposed to estrogen, starting early in pregnancy.  Estrogen stimulates her cancer-vulnerable lobules to multiply and causes her breasts to grow.  After the abortion or the premature birth, she is left with more cancer-vulnerable lobules than she had before she became pregnant. She misses the third trimester process in pregnancy (differentiation) that would have protected her from estrogen overexposure, and she loses an opportunity to mature her breast tissue into cancer-resistant Type 3 lobules.

 

A premature birth before 32 weeks of pregnancy more than doubles breast cancer risk. [14,15]  These findings also support the biological basis for an independent link between abortion and breast cancer.

 

In July 2006, the Institute of Medicine published an extensive report on premature birth.  It identified 17 risk factors for premature birth. [16] http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_releases/060727/index.htm

 

“Prior first trimester abortion,” infection and cervical anomaly were included on that list.  Cervical damage and infection can result from an abortion and thereby increase the likelihood that a woman will have a subsequent premature birth.

 

At least 60 significant studies support a link between abortion and subsequent premature birth. [17,18]  Premature birth is associated with cerebral palsy and neonatal deaths.  Texas is the only U.S. state that warns women about this risk. [19]

 

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11) Why does breastfeeding reduce breast cancer risk?

 

Type 4 lobules develop at the end of a full term pregnancy when Type 3 lobules fill with milk.  Both Type 3 and 4 lobules are resistant to cancer.  The longer a woman breastfeeds, the longer her breast lobules remain matured as Type 4 lobules.  Breastfeeding also reduces risk because it involves less estrogen exposure.  It suspends the woman’s menstrual periods for a time, and some of her menstrual cycles lack an estrogen peak before she ovulates.

 

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12) If a woman is pregnant and has breast cancer or gets pregnant after breast cancer, is she more likely to be cured if she carries the baby to term instead of choosing an abortion?

 

Yes.  Research shows she is much more likely to be cured if she carries the baby to term instead of choosing an abortion. [20]

 

The Breast Cancer Prevention Institute explains in its booklet that, “If a woman does develop breast cancer while she is pregnant, her greatest chance for survival is if she is abe to carry the pregnancy to full term.  HCG (human chorinonic gonadotropin), which is elevated during pregnancy, causes the ovary to produce a tumor suppressing protein called inhibin.  HCG is also known to cause breast cancers to regress.  In studies of women with breast cancer occurring during pregnancy, the only long-term survivors were women who did not undergo an induced abortion, but instead, gave birth or had a miscarriage.  Breast cancer may be treated without harm to the baby, even when the mother is given chemotherapy after the first 8 weeks of pregnancy.” [Breast Cancer Risks and Prevention, “Pregnancy and Breast Cancer Risk,” p. 14. Available at: http://www.bcpinstitute.org/booklet3.htm)

 

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13) Do nations that have high abortion rates - especially those that have a high prevalence of abortion before the birth of a first child - also have high breast cancer rates?

 

Andrew Schlafly, General Counsel for the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, explained in a journal article last year that differences in breast cancer rates among similar ethnic groups can be explained by differences in abortion rates.  He wrote:

 

"Regional variations in breast cancer rates among similar ethnic groups confirm the link between abortion and breast cancer. In Great Britain, for example, the rate of breast cancer decreases steadily as one travels from England, where abortion has been common, to Northern Ireland, where abortion has been uncommon, to Ireland, where it has been prohibited.

 

"In the United States, similar relationships between abortion and breast cancer can be observed.  The San Francisco Bay Area, including Berkeley, known for its long-standing acceptance of abortion, has a breast cancer rate 9 percent higher than the rest of the state, according to information from the state Department of Finance and the state Office of Vital Records.  In another example, Long Island has suffered from a high rate of breast cancer that politicians have blamed on the environment.  But Long Island has long had a thriving abortion industry, dating back to 1970 when the state legalized the procedure even before Roe v. Wade (the U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1973 that struck down state laws prohibiting abortion), and many of the earliest and busiest abortion clinics in the United States have been on Long Island.  In contrast, Wyoming has one of the lowest abortion rates among the states, and has one of the lowest breast cancer rates among women nationwide." [21]

 

Research by British statistician and insurance actuary Patrick Carroll, director of the Pension and Population Research Institute in London, lends further support to Schlafly's statement. [22,23] Carroll used British national data that captured a record of nearly every breast cancer and abortion. 

 

His research shows that abortion - especially among nulliparous women (those who were childless when they obtained abortions) - is the "best predictor of British breast cancer trends."

 

He, too, found that geographical differences in breast cancer rates across the British Isles and in Sweden, Finland, the Czech Republic and Ireland can be explained by differences in abortion rates and, to a lesser extent, by differences in fertility rates.

 

Citing abortions before the birth of a first child as "highly carcinogenic," Carroll wrote:

 

"In the British Isles and in continental Europe there is a sharply increasing nulliparous abortion rate among those women approaching age 50.  Since nulliparous abortions are much more carcinogenic than parous abortions (abortions after the birth of a first child), an accelerated increase in breast cancer is being experienced in the first years of the 21st century as a result of the high nulliparous abortion rates of the late 1970s and 1980s...." [22]

 

Carroll found that British upper class women are more likely to develop breast cancer and to die of the disease than are lower class women.  Upper class women have more abortions so that they can delay the birth of a first child, continue their educations and advance their careers.

 

He expects two developments: 1) The gap between Ireland's and Great Britain's breast cancer rates will continue to expand; and 2) Breast cancer rates will double in England and Wales by 2028.

 

"Ireland has the lowest rate of breast cancer (when compared to) the British Isles: 97 per 100,000 compared to 116 per 100,000 in the Southeast," wrote Carroll.  "The lower rate of breast cancer in Ireland is also explicable by the lower abortion rate there." [23] 

 

See Carroll's text and graphs at:

<http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/BritishCancerResearchMeeting/index.htm> and

<http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_releases/050909/index.htm>. 

 

See also "British Journal of Cancer: Legal Abortions Are 'Best Predictor of British Breast Cancer Trends,'" Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer press release, July 2, 2004, available at:

<http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_releases/040702/index.htm>.

 

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14) How do female breast cancer rates in Ireland, where abortion is illegal, compare to that of American rates? Do U.S. breast cancer statistics show that the Roe v. Wade generation is experiencing more breast cancers than their mothers and grandmothers?

 

Female breast cancer rates in Ireland are similar to what U.S. rates were before abortion became legally accessible. Lifetime risk for the average American woman has climbed from 1 in 12 in 1970 to 1 in 7 women in 2006 who developed the disease. U.S. cancer officials expect nearly 275,000 total cases of invasive and in situ breast cancer and nearly 41,000 female deaths due to the disease in 2006.

 

A national report on cancer in the U.S. reported cancer statistics for the period between 1973 and 1998. [24] It was compiled by U.S. government agencies and the American Cancer Society in 2001. 

 

According to the report, U.S. breast cancer statistics show that breast cancer rates climbed more than 40% between the mid-1980’s and 1998.  Among three age groups, only the youngest generation experienced the increase in breast cancer cases.  That generation was under age 40 in 1973 when abortion was made legally accessible by a U.S. Supreme Court decision known as Roe v. Wade. 

 

By contrast, the two older groups of women identified in the report didn't have legal access to abortion and did not suffer an increase in breast cancer rates.

 

Nevertheless, the authors didn't discuss abortion as the cause of the increased breast cancer rates for the Roe v. Wade generation, even though two of the seven authors had conducted earlier research that clearly supports abortion as a risk factor for the disease. [25,26]

 

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15) Did other researchers predict that an increased number of breast cancer cases would result from abortion?

 

Yes. The increased number of U.S. cases reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (above) is consistent with the increase that was predicted by Baruch College endocrinology professor Joel Brind and his colleagues at Penn State.  They authored a scientific review and meta-analysis in 1996.  They found that 18 out of 23 studies in the medical literature at that time had reported risk increases for women who had abortions. [27]

 

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16) At what age are most breast cancers diagnosed and when can the U.S. expect that the worst of the breast cancer epidemic will occur?

 

Since most female breast cancers are not diagnosed until age 50 and older, the worst is yet to come for the U.S.  According to Andrew Schlafly, "The United States has not yet felt the full impact of the abortions performed on more than 20 million young women since 1980.  The vast majority are well under 50 years old; many millions of them have not yet reached age 30." [21]

 

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17) Chinese government officials forcibly abort women who are illegally pregnant after the birth of a first child.  Don’t Chinese women have higher breast cancer rates?

 

Chinese government officials reported a nearly 40% increase in female breast cancer deaths between 1991 and 2000. [28] The increase can be attributed to China's one-child per couple policy. Government officials forcibly abort Chinese women who become pregnant illegally after the birth of a first child.

 

Unlike the Chinese, British and U.S. women generally choose to have their abortions before the birth of a first child. As mentioned earlier, these are the more carcinogenic abortions.

 

Abortion made breast cancer a young woman's disease in the U.S., as well as in China.  Before abortion became accessible in the U.S. in 1973, breast cancer had been considered a disease that grandmothers developed.

 

Like the U.S. government, the Chinese government has not publicly acknowledged abortion as the cause of the increased number of breast cancer cases. Both nations have aggressively pursued population control measures during the last two to three decades. Recognition of abortion as the reason for the increased number of cancer cases and deaths would be politically explosive and could conceivably cause political unrest.

 

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18) What does the animal research show?

 

Research by Russo and Russo showed that 77.7% more rats given abortions and subsequently exposed to a carcinogen developed breast cancers than did similarly exposed virgin rats (66.7%) and rats with pups (0%). [29]

 

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19) What epidemiological research has been conducted showing that abortion increases breast cancer risk?

 

Opponents of the abortion-breast cancer link do not challenge the biological reason for the link.  They challenge the evidence showing a statistical correlation - the epidemiological research.

 

Epidemiology is the study of disease trends in large populations. By itself, epidemiology cannot establish whether or not a cause-effect relationship exists, but it can be used as one more piece in the puzzle that supports a cause-effect relationship.

 

Seventy epidemiological studies have been conducted in Asia, Europe, Australia and the U.S. since 1957. Eighty percent of these studies report risk increases for women who had abortions.

 

The National Cancer Institute specifically commissioned a study by Janet Daling and her colleagues.  She reported that, “Among women who had been pregnant at least once, the risk of breast cancer in those who had experienced an induced abortion was 50% higher than among other women.” “Highest risks (more than double) were observed when the abortion was done at ages younger than 18 years …. or at least thirty years of age or older.” [30]

 

Daling et al. identified several high-risk groups, i.e. teenagers who have abortions before age 18, women with a family history of the disease and women 30 years of age or older.

 

Professor Joel Brind of Baruch College and his co-authors at Penn State conducted a scientific review and meta-analysis of 23 studies.  They found 18 that reported risk increases.  They reported a 30% risk increase for women who have abortions after the birth of a first child and a 50% risk increase for women who have abortions before the birth of a first child. [27]

 

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20) I know that abortion industry experts concede that women who have abortions lose the risk-reducing benefit of childbearing. However, apart from that effect, aren’t there studies showing that an abortion raises risk very little or not at all, in comparison to not having had that pregnancy?

 

Yes. There are several studies that report these results.  Unfortunately, when you read about it in the press, journalists often don’t understand the differences between the two cancer risks of abortion.

 

For instance, Valerie Beral and her colleagues published a paper in the British journal Lancet in 2004 that has been widely used to convince women that abortion is “safe.” [31]

 

The Beral paper only examined the debated breast cancer risk.  Its authors conceded the recognized risk of abortion - that childbearing protects women from the disease.

 

"Unfortunately, misinformation has circulated in the media following an article published last year in the British medical journal The Lancet," noted Andrew Schlafly, General Counsel for the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.  "The article did not deny that increased abortions result in greater incidence of breast cancer.  Rather, the article merely claimed that abortion does not increase the risk of breast cancer, compared to the risk of someone who delayed pregnancy altogether." [21]

 

Four experts, independently of one another, sharply criticized the Beral paper. [21,32,33,34,35]  Some of the criticisms include:

 

1) Beral et al. did not compare groups of women who were physiologically the same.  They should have compared pregnant women who aborted to pregnant women who carried their pregnancies to term.  Instead, they compared the effect of aborting with the effect of not having had that pregnancy. Pregnancy brings about permanent changes in the structure of the breasts. Pregnant women who choose abortion should be compared to pregnant women who give birth after a full term pregnancy.

 

2) Twenty-eight out of 52 studies (a majority of the research) contained unpublished abortion data. That means that scientists cannot double-check those studies to determine if they're flawed or if the research is even relevant.  Women just have to take their word for it.

 

3) Beral et al. used unscientific reasons to exclude 14 peer-reviewed, published studies that reported risk increases for women who had abortions. 

 

Ed Furton, MA, Ph.D., editor of the journal, Ethics and Medics, severely criticized the Beral paper.  He said:

 

"The Beral study is therefore cause for alarm.  When a leading scientific journal allows its pages to be used as a political platform, and sets aside objective standards of scientific research, we must begin to wonder whether the spirit of (Jacques) Derrida has infected even scientific discourse….

 

"Picking conclusions ahead of time, and arranging the evidence to support them, will only

serve to undermine the respect that scientific inquiry deserves….

 

"The unwillingness of scientists to speak out against the shoddy research that is being advanced by those who deny the abortion-breast cancer link is a very serious breach…

 

"When the public learns that a causal link between abortion and breast cancer has been downplayed by the scientific community – for reasons that are ideological rather than factual – the feeling of betrayal will be strong." [34]

 

Professor Joel Brind at Baruch College in New York concurs with Ed Furton.  He has documented widespread bias in the scientific community against the abortion-breast cancer link. In a major paper for the National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, he cited flawed research that is being used in press reports to erase any notions in the public mind that abortion is unsafe. [32]

 

In a subsequent paper for the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons published in 2005, Brind reviewed ten recent, prospective studies and concluded that they are seriously flawed.  He wrote:

 

“Collectively, these studies are found to embody many serious weaknesses and flaws, including cohort effects, substantial misclassification errors due to missing information in databases, inadequate follow-up times, inadequately controlled effects of confounding variables, and frank violations of the scientific method.  These recent studies therefore do not invalidate the large body of previously published studies that established induced abortion as a risk factor for breast cancer.” [35]

 

Although these studies have been criticized in a medical journal for their flaws, the abortion industry and the cancer fundraising industry use them to convince women of the safety of abortion.  These studies include:

 

Melbye M, Wohlfahrt J, Olson JH, Frisch M, Westergaard T, Helweg-Larsen K, Andersen PK. Induced abortion and the risk of breast cancer. N Engl J Med 1997;336:81-85.

 

Lazovich D, Thompson JA, Mink PJ, Sellers TA, Anderson KE. Induced abortion and breast cancer risk. Epidemiology 2000;11:76-80.

 

Tang NC, Weiss NS, Malone KE. Induced abortion in relation to breast cancer among parous women: A birth certificate registry study. Epidemiology 2000;11:177-80.

 

Goldacre MJ, Kurina LM, Seagroatt V, Yeates. Abortion and breast cancer: a case-control record linkage study. J Epidemiol Community Health 2001;55:336-337.

 

Ye Z, Gao DL, Qin Q, Ray RM, Thomas DB. Breast cancer in relation to induced abortions in a cohort of Chinese women. Br J Cancer 2002;87:977-981.

 

Newcomb PA, Mandelson MT. A record-based evaluation of induced abortion and breast cancer risk (United States). Cancer Causes Control 2000;11:777-781.

 

Erlandsson G, Montgomery S, Cnattingius S, et al. Abortions and breast cancer: Record-based case-control study. Int J Cancer 2003;103:676-679.

 

Paoletti X, Clavel-Chapelon F, E3N group. Induced and spontaneous abortion and breast cancer risk: Results from the E3N cohort study. Int J Cancer 2003;106:270-276.

 

Brewster D, Stockton D, Dobbie R, Bull D, Beral D. Risk of breast cancer after miscarriage or induced abortion: a Scottish record linkage case-control study. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 2005;59:283-287.

 

Palmer J, Wise L, Adams-Campbell LL, Rosenberg L. A prospective study of induced abortion and breast cancer in African-American women. Cancer Causes and Control 2004;15:105-111.

 

For more information, see Dr. Brind’s review article in the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons at: http://www.jpands.org/vol10no4/brind.pdf

 

In 2007, Patrick Carroll, a British statistician and actuary, reported that abortion is the “best predictor” of breast cancer rates in eight European countries (including the U.K.), and fertility is also a useful predictor of those trends. [39,40] Carroll demonstrated that he could predict future breast cancer cases for England and Wales for the years 2003 and 2004 with nearly 100% accuracy by using abortion rates and, to a lesser extent, fertility rates in his mathematical model.

 

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21) What is report bias?

 

Opponents of the abortion-breast cancer link argue that the studies whose authors relied on interviews with women (instead of using medical records) to determine whether or not they had had abortions are flawed studies. They maintain that breast cancer patients are more likely to tell the truth about their abortion histories than are healthy women.  Of course, it’s theoretically possible that the reverse is true and that patients are more likely to lie.  If so, then the breast cancer risk due to abortion is higher than what researchers have reported.

 

The truth is, however, that this hypothetical problem has been tested on many occasions, and no scientific team currently claims to have found credible evidence of a difference in reporting levels between patients and healthy women.

 

Moreover, research published in 1989 by Howe et al. reported a statistically significant 90% increased risk for New York women who had abortions. [25]  Their research was free of any possibility of recall bias because they matched medical records to fetal death records to determine which breast cancer patients had had abortions.

 

Patrick Carroll's research (discussed above) is also free of recall bias because of his use of British national statistics. [23]

 

For more information on our opponents’ unfounded claims of report bias, see

http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/recall_bias/

 

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22) Why do experts say they are reluctant to publicly acknowledge the abortion-breast cancer link?

 

The abortion-breast cancer link is the cancer establishment’s elephant in the living room. Several years ago, Dr. Lanfranchi testified in a California lawsuit against Planned Parenthood that leading medical experts from Harvard, the Miami Breast Cancer Conference and elsewhere privately told her that they know abortion raises a woman's breast cancer risk.  Nevertheless, the experts said they would not acknowledge the link publicly because it is "too political."  What they really mean is they're fearful of losing their jobs, their government grant money, their good names and their reputations.

 

Other experts adhere to a radical feminist ideology.  For instance, during an interview about the abortion-breast cancer link with a journalist from CancerPage.com, Dr. Leslie Bernstein of the University of Southern California revealed her bias against childbearing.  She said:

 

"There are so many other messages we can give women about lifestyle modification and the impact of lifestyle and risk that I would never be a proponent of going around and telling them that having babies is the way to reduce your risk."

 

Bernstein discussed her fears that an abortion-breast cancer link might cause abortion to be made illegal.  She explained:

 

"I don’t want the issue relating to induced abortion to breast cancer risk to be part of mix of the discussion of induced abortion, its legality, its continued availability.  I think it should not be part of the argument." [36]

 

Lifetime risk for Americans is at an all-time high of 13.4%, but remarkably, Bernstein wants to withhold life-saving information from women about the best way to reduce risk.

 

Dr. Angela Lanfranchi compares their reluctance to acknowledge the abortion-breast cancer link to similar situations that have been repeated throughout the history of modern medicine. 

 

The most famous case is that of Dr. Ignaz Semmelweiss, an Hungarian physician in the 1840's who observed that more doctors' patients were dying of childbed fever than were midwives' patients. Semmelweiss noticed that the doctors were going from the mortuary to the maternity ward without washing their hands. The midwives, however, were washing their hands. He conducted an experiment and found that handwashing by doctors would reduce the death rate in the maternity ward. 

 

Semmelweiss' superiors found it difficult to accept the idea from a Jewish resident-in-training that they were responsible for their patients' deaths.  Therefore, they responded to Semmelweiss' findings by ridiculing him and taking away his hospital privileges.

 

Semmelweiss' idea was not accepted in mainstream medicine until germ theory became recognized in the 1870s.

 

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23) Have any women sued their abortion doctors for failing to disclose the breast cancer risks of abortion?

 

Two American women and two Australian women successfully sued their abortion doctors for failing to disclose the risks of breast cancer and emotional harm. [21]

 

"The abortion industry and medical establishment withholds (information about the link) in an attempt to prevent massive lawsuits from being filed," declared Andrew Schlafly, Esq. "The tsunami of breast cancer cases from the large number of abortions in the 1980s and 1990s has yet to hit." [37]

 

Although Schlafly is general counsel for a medical organization, he wrote an article advising women who'd had abortions that they have a right to sue any abortion doctor who doesn't warn them about the increased risk of breast cancer.

 

U.S. citizens and employers pay heavily for the consequences of abortion whenever we pay our insurance premiums and our doctors' bills.  Schlafly warned doctors that the abortion-breast cancer link is driving the medical malpractice insurance crisis in the U.S. The most frequent cause of malpractice lawsuits today is failure to diagnose breast cancer (or failure to diagnose it early). [21]

 

That means doctors have become the "fall guys" for the misconduct of their own medical organizations, the U.S. National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, and others who either deny the abortion-breast cancer link or remain silent about it.  Doctors can't screen women for breast cancer properly if the cancer establishment lies to them about the most preventable cause of the disease - abortion.

 

The abortion industry should be made to pay for the increased health care costs due to breast cancer, just as the tobacco industry was ultimately forced to pay for increased health care costs due to cigarette smoking.

 

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24) What comparisons can be drawn between the abortion industry’s and the tobacco industry’s cover-ups of links to cancer?

 

Numerous comparisons can be drawn between the abortion industry and the tobacco industry.  Both involved enormously wealthy industries that concealed evidence of cancer risks implicating their products or "services."  Officials from both industries worked hard to dispel any suspicions that their products or "services" are unsafe. 

 

They've each used the cachet of the most highly respected scientists and cancer research facilities in order to disparage any evidence that linked their products or "services" with cancer.

 

Dr. David Kessler, former head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, wrote in his book, A Question of Intent, that the tobacco industry used its wealth to silence researchers at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center who'd found experimental evidence of a tobacco-cancer link. [38] He said the industry also gave grants to premier U.S. cancer research facilities, including Harvard, UCLA, Sloan Kettering and others.

 

The industry gave grants to the American Medical Association (AMA).  In the same month (February 1964) that it gave the AMA $10 million to conduct tobacco-cancer research, the AMA opposed efforts in the U.S. Congress to warn consumers on cigarette packages about the health risks of smoking.

 

Evidence of a tobacco-cancer link was reported in research dating as early as the 1920s.  Although thousands of Americans were developing lung disease at an unprecedented rate, officials at the U.S. National Cancer Institute and the Office of the U.S. Surgeon General dragged their feet before acknowledging a link in 1964.

 

In the case of both tobacco and abortion, the U.S. National Cancer Institute declined to acknowledge evidence of these cancer risks on the basis that absolute scientific "proof" was lacking, even as the death toll mounted every year and the evidence has been available for decades. In the case of abortion, the evidence has been available since 1957.

 

Nevertheless, business is booming for U.S. based cancer fundraising businesses and corporations that manufacture a multitude of pink products ad nauseum during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Their denials of an abortion-breast cancer link ensure that breast cancer will be profitable for decades to come. 

 

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References:

 

1. North Florida Women's Health and Counseling Services, Inc., et al., v. State of Florida et al., official transcript of videotape deposition of Lynn Rosenberg, Sc.D., for purposes of trial testimony, Nov. 18, 1999, p. 77.

 

2. "Scientists vote to list estrogen as carcinogen despite benefits," Associated Press, December 17, 2000.

 

3. Miller K. Estrogen and DNA damage: The silent source of breast cancer? J Natl Cancer Inst 2003;95:100-2.

 

4. Cogliano V, Grosse Y, Baan R, Secretan B, El Ghissassi F. Carcinogenicity of combined oestrogen-progestagen contraceptives and menopausal treatment. Lancet Oncology 2005;6:552-553.

 

5. Press Release No. 167, "IARC Monographs Programme Finds Combined Estrogen-Progestogen Contraceptives (the "pill") and Menopausal Therapy Are Carcinogenic to Humans," World Health Organization International Agency for Research on Cancer, July 29, 2005. See

<http://www.iarc.fr/ENG/Press_Releases/pr167a.html>.

 

6. Henderson BE, Ross R, Bernstein L. Estrogen is a cause of human cancer: The Richard and Hilda Rosenthal Foundation Award Lecture. Cancer Res 1988;48:246-53.

 

7. Robert B. Dickson, Ph.D., Marc E. Lippman, MD, "Growth  Regulation of Normal and Maglignant Breast Epithelium," The Breast:  Comprehensive Management of Benign and Malignant Diseases, edited by  Kirby I. Bland MD and Edward M. Copeland III, MD; (1998) W.B. Saunders  Company; 2nd edition; Vol 1, p.519.

 

8. Neville & Daniel (ed) The Mammary Gland, Plenum, NY 1987:67-93.

 

9. Russo J, Reina D, Frederick J, et al. Expression of phenotypical changes by human breast epithelial cells treated with carcinogens in vitro. Cancer Res 1988;48:2837-2857.

 

10. Russo J, Russo IH. Development of the human mammary gland. In Neville MD, Daniel C (ed). The Mammary Gland, Plenum, NY 1987:67-93.

 

11. Vorher H. The Breast, Academic, New York 1974:1-18.

 

12. Beral V, et al. Breast cancer and breastfeeding: collaborative re-analysis of individual data from 47 epidemiological studies in 30 countries, including 50,302 women with breast cancer and 96,973 women without the disease. Lancet 2002;360:187-195.

 

13. Lanfranchi A. The breast physiology and the epidemiology of the abortion breast cancer link. Imago Hominis 2005;12(3): 228-236. http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/Lanfranchi060201.pdf.

 

14. Melbye M, et al. Preterm delivery and risk of breast cancer. Bri J Cancer 1999;80:609-13.

 

15. Hsieh C-c, Wuu J, Lambe M, Trichopoulos D, et al Delivery of premature newborns and maternal breast-cancer risk. Lancet 1999;353-1239.

 

16. Richard E. Behrman, Adrienne Stith Butler, Editors. Preterm birth: Causes, Consequences and Prevention. Committee on Understanding Premature Birth and Assuring Healthy Outcomes. Institute of Medicine. Appendix B, Table 5, p. 519.  Available at:

<http://darwin.nap.edu/books/030910159X/html/519.html>.

 

17. Rooney B, Calhoun B. Induced abortion and risk of later premature births. Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons 2003;8:46-49.

 

18. Thorp JM, Hartmann KE, Shadigian EM. Long-term physical and psychological health consequences of induced abortion: A review of the evidence. Obstet & Gynecol Survey 2003;58:1.

 

19. Woman's Right to Know, Texas Department of State Health Services. Available at:

<http://www.dshs.state.tx.us/wrtk/default.shtm>.

 

20. Clark & Chua. Breast cancer and pregnancy: The ultimate challenge.  Clin Oncol 1989;1:11-18.

 

21. Schlafly A. Legal implications of a link between abortion and breast cancer. J Am Phys Surgeons 2005;10:11-14. Available at: <http://www.jpands.org/vol10no1/aschlafly.pdf>.

 

22. Carroll P. Pregnancy Related Risk Factors in Female Breast Cancer Incidence. International Congress of Actuaries, Transactions 2002;4:331-75.

 

23. Carroll P. Trends and Risk Factors in English Breast Cancer. British Journal of Cancer 2004;91 (Suppl. 1):S24 (abstract).   See Carroll's text and graphs at: <http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/BritishCancerResearchMeeting/index.htm> and <http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_releases/050909/index.htm>.  See also "British Journal of Cancer: Legal Abortions Are 'Best Predictor of British Breast Cancer Trends,'" Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer press release, July 2, 2004, available at: <http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/press_releases/040702/index.htm>.

 

24. Howe HL, Wingo PA, Thun MJ, Ries LA, Rosenberg HM, Feigal EG, Edwards BK. Annual report to the nation on the status of cancer, 1973 through 1998, featuring cancers with recent increasing trends. J Natl Cancer Inst 2001;93:824-842.

 

25. Howe HL, Senie RT, Bzduch H, Herzfeld P. Early abortion and breast cancer risk among women under age 40. Int J Epidemiol 1989;18:300-304.

 

26. Wingo PA, Newsome K, Marks JS, Calle EE, Parker SL.et al. The risk of breast cancer following spontaneous or induced abortion. Cancer Causes Control 1997;8:93-108.

 

27. Brind J, Chinchilli, VM, Severs WB, Summy-Long J. Induced abortion as an independent risk factor for breast cancer: a comprehensive review and meta-analysis. J Epidemiol Community Health 1996;50:481-496.

 

28. "Breast cancer cases jump in China, hits younger women," AFP Worldwide News Agency, October 5, 2005. Available at:

<http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20051005/hl_afp/chinahealthcancer_051005174502>.

 

29. Russo J, Russo IH. Susceptibility of the mammary gland to carcinogenesis. Am J Pathol 1980;100: 497-512.

 

30. Daling JR, Malone DE, Voigt LF, White E, Weiss NS. Risk of breast cancer among young women: relationship to induced abortion. J Natl Cancer Inst 1994;86:1584-1592.

 

31. Beral V, Bull D, Doll R, Peto R, Reeves G. Collaborative Group of Hormonal Factors in Breast Cancer. Breast cancer and abortion: collaborative reanalysis of data from 53 epidemiological studies, including 83,000 women with breast cancer from 16 countries. Lancet 2004;363:1007-16.

 

32. Brind J. The abortion-breast cancer connection. National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly Summer 2005; p. 303-329. Available at: <http://www.AbortionBreastCancer.com/Brind_NCBQ.PDF>.

 

33. Lanfranchi A. The abortion-breast cancer link revisited. Ethics and Medics (November 2004) Vol. 29, No. 11, p. 1-4.

 

34. Furton E. The corruption of science by ideology. Ethics and Medics (Dec. 2004) Vol. 29, No. 12, p. 1-2.

 

35. Brind J. Induced abortion as an independent risk factor for breast cancer: A critical review of recent studies based on prospective data. J Am Phys Surg Vol. 10, No. 4 (Winter 2005) 105-110. Available at: < http://www.jpands.org/vol10no4/brind.pdf>.

 

36. Rachael Myers Lowe, "NCI scientific panel concludes abortion has no impact on breast cancer risk," CancerPage.com, March 3, 2003. Available at:

 <http://cancerpage.com/news/article.asp?id=5601>.

 

37. Schlafly A. Had an abortion? Call an attorney. Celebrate Life (Sept.Oct. 2005);31-32.  Available at: <http://www.abortionbreastcancer.com/Schlafly0510.pdf>.

 

38. Kessler D. Question of Intent: a Great American Battle with a Deadly Industry. 1st ed. New York, NY: Public Affairs; 2001:207.

 

39. Carroll, P. The breast cancer epidemic: modeling and forecasts based on abortion and other risk factors." J Am Phys Surg Vol. 12, No. 3 (Fall 2007) 72-78.  Available at: http://www.jpands.org/vol12no3/carroll.pdf

40. Carroll P. The Breast Cancer Epidemic. The Actuary (November 2007) p. 30-31. Available at:
http://www.the-actuary.org.uk/pdfs/07_11_30-31.pdf

Updated: Monday, December 15, 2008