The Link Between Breast Cancer and Abortion
Much has been said concerning the "link" between breast cancer and abortion (specifically, the usual claim made is that having an abortion leads to a higher rate of breast cancer) but it is important to state a number of vital facts which place such claims in context. Firstly, there is no unanimous consensus concerning this among the medical community. As with much involving abortion, birth control and other matters, there is a great deal of disagreement and many groups (on both sides of the issue) appear to have "an ax to grind".
Secondly, even if the figures are viewed as saying that, among women who have had abortions, there is a higher rate of breast cancer, this is not the same thing as saying that abortion causes breast cancer. It would be irresponsible of us to directly suggest or state such a thing.
Having said all that, however, there is a great deal of information available which shows or suggests a corrolation between abortion and breast cancer in women. This is not the same as establishing a causal link. A number of articles are provided here which contain important information. We are very grateful to Michelle Yax of Mother and Unborn Baby Care for providing this material from her own research.
This article (PDF Version) from MSNBC concerns itself with the rise in male breast cancer rates, but additionally provides the figure for rising breast cancer rates for US women. These rates have risen 52% between 1973 and 1998. Roe vs. Wade was handed down in 1973.
This second article (PDF Version) is from the Daily Mail (in the United Kingdom) and shows an 80% increase in breast cancer rates between 1971 and 2004 in England. Abortion became legal in the United Kingdom six years earlier than the United States.
This article (PDF Version) from the China Daily cites an increase in breast cancer rates of almost 300% between 1992 and 2002. The 'one-child policy' (Live HTML article) (MHT HTML archive snapshot taken May 2008) of the Chinese government (introduced in 1979) has been cited as increasing the number of abortions (see 'Criticism of the one-child policy' in the article above) with forced-abortions taking place (see here (Live HTML article) (MHT HTML archive snapshot taken May 2008) and here (Live HTML article) (MHT HTML archive snapshot taken May 2008) ). There is a corrolation between these policies and an increase in incidence of breast cancer (although, as mentioned above, this does not prove a causal link. Prior to these policies, the Chinese breast-cancer rate was very low.
This article (PDF Version) provides further information, and also highlights a racial aspect to the statistics; statistically, black women are three times as likely as white women to get abortions - and also suffer a higher death rate from breast cancer. This suggests (although does not prove) a link between abortion and more aggressive, more deadly cancers.
This article (PDF Version) by Chris Kahlenborn, MD, contains medical information which provides an explanation for the phenomenon. There is a great deal of information in here, including specifics on some of the increased risks for particular groups of women (for instance if under age 18 and past 8 weeks the increased risk is 800%).
Finally, in this article (PDF Version) by Angela Lanfranchi, MD, FACS an explanation is offered as to how all six of the scientifically required criteria to establish cause have been met.