Fertility drugs not linked to increased breast cancer risk

Written by Community Health Network on 4/7/2014 10:00:00 AM

A 30-year follow-up study of more than 12,000 women shows if they took fertility drugs (clomiphene citrate or gonadotropins) this treatment did not increase their risk for developing breast cancer.

Previous studies have reported conflicting results, from increased and decreased risk, to no association. Overall, during the 30-year period, only 749 of the women in this study were diagnosed with breast cancer. 

However, if women received up to 12 fertility treatment cycles and were unable to become pregnant, their risk for developing breast cancer was increased. The leading author on the study noted that the cancer risk to these women “may be related to persistent infertility rather than an effect of the fertility medications.”

Source: National Cancer Institute–funded study, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention

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