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Recent study: birth control may lead to breast cancer

According to a study done in Denmark, birth control may lead to breast cancer. Claudia Coco / WGXA News

MACON, Ga -- A study done on 1.8 million women in Denmark over the course of 11 years shows that using birth control can lead to breast cancer.

Lauren Faulkner was one of the millions of women who have taken birth control. In 2010 the Centers for Disease control reported that 10.6 million women used the pill.

"I have used birth control in the past, I started whenever I was 16 years old," Faulkner said.

She said that finding is a little scary, but she went to talk to her doctor and hopes others will do the same.

"I think it is important to talk to them and just see what your risks are especially if you have a family history," Faulkner said.

Now the mother of a two-year-old she doesn't want to go back on it, but she says all women should know the risks.

"I feel like if you had a strong family history of breast cancer, or cancer in general runs strongly in your family, then that's something that you really need to consider, but I think it'st just an individual choice," Faulkner said.

Chief of Surgical Oncology at Navicent Health, Dr. Paul Dale said it's important to look at what's in your birth control.

"The final conclusion was that using birth controls might increase your risk for breast cancer, especially those that have a higher content of progesterone instead of estrogen," Dr. Dale said.

He said even though it slightly increases your risk for breast cancer it actually decreases the chances of other types of cancers.

"It's interesting that studies have shown that birth control use decreases the risk of getting ovarian and endometrial cancer," Dr. Dale said.

He said talk to your doctor about what you're using.

"If you're going to be on birth control then utilize the lowest doses possible and I think you're going to be fine," Dr. Dale said.

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