Thursday, April 28, 2011

Christians: Things you need to know about the RH bill #2. There are contraceptives in the RH bill which are harmful to women.

There are contraceptives in the RH bill which are harmful to women.The RH bill says it shall provide “medically safe contraceptives” and will even purchase such contraceptives together with essential medicines for all LGUs. But there is a whole lot of evidence for harmful effects to women of certain contraceptives.

These harmful effects are the following:
1) Oral contraceptives increase the risk of developing breast cancer.
2) Oral contraceptives increase the risk of suffering from venous thrombosis.
3) Intrauterine devices can cause perforation of the uterus and other internal body parts and life-threatening infections.
I present here medical evidence from scientific journals for each of the abovementioned harmful effects.

1) Oral contraceptives increase the risk of developing breast cancer.

The Filipino public MUST KNOW that oral contraceptives increase the risk of developing breast cancer. Certain RH bill advocates have downplayed this increased risk of breast cancer from pills, and have even labeled prolifers to be “misinforming” or “lying” about this . Here we present several studies from scientific journals that state this very same finding. These prestigious researchers are definitely not misinforming. Well, even an RH bill advocate (former DOH secretary Cabral) admitted in a radio interview on April 27,2011 that oral contraceptives do increase the risk of developing breast cancer.

A 2006 study published by researchers at the prestigious Mayo Clinic in the peer-reviewed medical journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings stated that:
“Use of oral contraceptives is associated with an increased risk of premenopausal breast cancer, especially with use before first full term pregnancy in parous women.” (parous=has given birth to a live infant)
Oral Contraceptive Use as a Risk Factor for Premenopausal Breast Cancer: A Meta-analysis.doi: 10.4065/​81.10.1290. Mayo Clinic Proceedings October 2006 vol. 81 no. 10 1290-1302. Chris Kahlenborn, MD, Francesmary Modugno, PhD, MPH, Douglas M. Potter, PhD and Walter B. Severs, PhD
A more recent study, published in 2010, by cancer researchers in the US, concluded that:
“Current use of oral contraceptives carries an excess risk of breast cancer. Levonorgestrel used in triphasic preparations may account for much of this elevation in risk.”
-Oral contraceptive use and breast cancer: a prospective study of young women.Hunter, DJ et al.Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention Journal ; 2010 Oct;19(10):2496-502. Epub 2010 Aug 27.(American Association for Cancer Research)
Two well-known Filipino researchers from the University of the Philippines also found the same results in the Filipino population. They published their study in the Japanese Journal of Clinical Oncology. They stated:
“Women who are currently on combined oral contraceptives or who have used them in the last 10 years are at a slightly increased risk of having breast cancer diagnosed and additional cancers diagnosed tend to be localized to the breast. There is no evidence of an increased risk 10 or more years after stopping use …Post-menopausal women are at an increased risk of having breast cancer diagnosed while on hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and in the 5 years after stopping use, relative risk was increased by 2.7% for each year of use. There is no evidence of an increased risk of breast cancer 5 or more years after stopping HRT .”

Cancer and the Philippine Cancer Control Program.Ngelangel,CA and Wang, EHM. Japanese Journal of Clinical Oncology (2002) 32(suppl 1): S52-S61.doi: 10.1093/jjco/hye126
Experimental biologists in yet another study state that combinations of synthetic progestins and estrogens increase the risk of breast cancer.:
“There is now considerable evidence that using a combination of synthetic progestins and estrogens in hormone replacement therapy (HRT) increases the risk of breast cancer compared with estrogen alone. Furthermore, the World Health Organization has recently cited combination contraceptives, which contain synthetic progestins, as potentially carcinogenic to humans, particularly for increased breast cancer risk.”
The researchers furthermore explain the mechanism how synthetic progestins and estrogens, which are used in hormone replacement therapy,but are also found in oral contraceptives, affect the breast. Breast tissues in women respond to hormonal changes in a woman’s menstrual cycle, as part of God’s design , to prepare for breast changes in case of pregnancy. The study explains how hormones in oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy alter these normal cyclical changes in breast cells:
“Disruption of androgen action by synthetic progestins may have serious deleterious side effects in the breast, where the balance between estrogen signaling and androgen signaling plays a critical role in breast homeostasis. Here, we review the role of androgen signaling in the normal breast and in breast cancer and present new data demonstrating that androgen receptor function can be perturbed by low doses of MPA(medroxyprogesterone acetate), similar to doses achieved in serum of women taking HRT. We propose that the observed excess of breast malignancies associated with combined HRT may be explained, in part, by synthetic progestins such as MPA acting as endocrine disruptors to negate the protective effects of androgen signaling in the breast." 
Disruption of androgen receptor signaling by synthetic progestins may increase risk of developing breast cancer. FASEB(Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology) Journal. 2007 Aug;21(10):2285-93. Epub 2007 Apr 5.Birrell SN, et al

Both endogenous (naturally in the body) and synthetic (in contraceptives and HRT) estrogens are responsible for breast cancer cell proliferation (in estrogen-sensitive tumors). That is why anti-estrogen medications are efficacious in preventing and treating breast cancer. This is what French and Italian researchers reported in the Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology :
“The greater breast cancer risk persistently related to the use of HRT preparations containing estrogen and synthetic progestins seems in all likelihood due to the regimen and/or to the kind of progestin used. The “non-physiological” continuous-combined regimen, could increase the risk because it does not allow sloughing of lobular duct epithelium (such as occurs when progesterone declines at the end of the normal menstrual cycle). More importantly, many of the progestins used have several non-progesterone like actions that potentiate the proliferative effect of estrogens on breast tissue and estrogensensitive cancer cells.”
-Progestins and progesterone in hormone replacement therapy and the risk of breast cancer. Carlo Campagnoli, Françoise Clavel-Chapelon, Rudolf Kaaks, Clementina Peris, and Franco Berrino J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2005 July ; 96(2): 95–108.
On the Philippine Breast Cancer Network website they put a statement: "Some of the causes of breast cancer ... can only be controlled by political and social action aimed at reducing the production, use, transport and disposal of agents that directly or indirectly affect breast cancer risks.- Environmental Health Perspectives, September 1998”

If we were to follow this recommendation above for breast cancer, logically, therefore, the government “must reduce the production, use, transport and disposal of hormonal contraceptives.”-because hormonal contraceptives directly increase breast cancer risk.

The government tries to reduce smoking through public health awareness education to prevent lung cancer. Yet the RH bill will include these breast-cancer-risk-increasing hormonal contraceptives together with the purchase of essential medicines (Section 10) for all national and local hospitals and local government units.

2) Oral contraceptives increase risk of developing venous thrombosis

That oral contraceptives increase the risk of developing venous thrombosis is also a well-known fact.
Researchers from the Netherlands studied 1524 OC users vs 1760 non-users of oral contraceptives in their country. In their 2009 study, they concluded:
“ Currently available oral contraceptives increasedthe risk of venous thrombosis fivefold compared with non-use . The risk clearly differed by type of progestogen and dose of oestrogen. The use of oral contraceptives containing levonorgestrel was associated with an almost fourfold increased risk of venous thrombosis relative to non-users, whereas the risk of venous thrombosis compared with non-use was increased 5.6- fold for gestodene, 7.3-fold for desogestrel , 6.8-fold for cyproterone acetate and 6.3-fold for drospirenone. The risk of venous thrombosis was positively associated with oestrogen dose. We confirmed a high risk of venous thrombosis during the first months of oral contraceptive use irrespective of the type of oral contraceptives.” -

The venous thrombotic risk of oral contraceptives, effects of oestrogen dose and progestogen type: results of the MEGA case-control study . British Medical Journal. 2009 Aug 13;339:b2921 . A van Hylckama Vlieg, F M Helmerhorst, J P Vandenbroucke, C J M Doggen, F R Rosendaal.

3) Intrauterine devices can cause perforation of the uterus and other internal body parts and life-threatening infections.
The Filipino public must know about these cases and see for themselves that these are not medically “safe” devices.

Let this picture speak for itself. This is an IUD that has perforated the large intestine. It perforated the uterine wall and then the large intestine. Remember, IUDs are hard foreign bodies and they do not belong in a soft internal organ.This is from the from Journal of the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons 2010 Jul-Sep.JSLS (2010)14:456–458 Laparoscopic Removal of an Intrauterine Device Following Colon Perforation.Arie Bitterman, MD, Oleg Lefel, MD, Yakir Segev, MD, MSc, Ofer Lavie, MD.

Here is another picture of an IUD that has perforated the bladder. It is from the Canadian Urology Association Journal 2010 Oct;4(5):E141-3. Intravesical migration of an intrauterine device detected in a pregnant woman.Tosun M, Celik H, Yavuz E, Cetinkaya MB.

Korean researchers also report of a case of a patient who had had vague lower abdominal pain for three months. They state:
"The abdominal X-ray, computed tomography and colonoscopy revealed that the IUD had penetrated into the descending colon."Penetration of the descending colon by a migrating intrauterine contraceptive device.J Korean Soc Coloproctology. 2010 Dec;26(6):433-6. Epub 2010 Dec 31.Park JM, et al.

Researchers from Greece report of a woman who had actinomycosis ( a bacterial infection from Actinomyces israelii) stemming from an IUD. They report:
"Ultrasound and computed tomography were performed, revealing an ovarian tumor formation and acute appendicitis. The patient underwent exploratory laparotomy, unilateral ovarectomy due to acute abscess and finally appendectomy. The role of IUD as a factor in the dissemination of the infection is very important.” Actinomycosis of the appendix and pelvis: a case report. J Reprod Med. 2008; 53(9):711-3 Peitsidis P et al

American researchers report of a woman who had Pseudomonas infection (a bacterial infection from Pseudomonas aeruginosa):
“Case: a 35-year-old woman with an IUD for 6 years with pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) . Authors implemented antibiotic therapy. Her clinical course worsened, and exploratory surgery revealed a right tubo-ovarian abscess with multiple loculated pelvic abscesses. Culture of the IUD found heavy growth of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. “Pseudomonas aeruginosa-infected IUD associated with pelvic inflammatory disease. A case report.J Reprod Med. 2002; 47(12):1035-7 .King JA; Olsen TG; Lim R; Nycum LR.

Infections may also be fatal. Researchers from Poland report of a woman who died from Actinomycosis infection from her IUD:
“Case: 49-year-old woman who had been using an intrauterine contraceptive device for 20 years. The pelvic actinomycosis in her case led to sepsis and consequently to her death. Colonisation with Actinomyces israeli in women using IUD may amount up to even 20%.” Pelvic actynomycosis as the result of a long standing use of an intrauterine device. Case report. Ginekol Pol. 2007; 78(12):995-7. Grabiec M; et al.

We have shown you the harmful effects of these contraceptives which are included in the RH bill. In our earlier blog post, we showed how the RH bill does not uphold life from conception,which is just one reason to reject the RH bill. Here we have shown you the harmful effects of contraceptives, the foremost of which is breast cancer. Breast cancer is more than a mere side-effect. Side effects are things like “headaches”, “skin rashes” or “dizziness”. This is breast cancer: a malignant, spreading,and ultimately fatal disease of breast tissue. This is definitely something the public must know, because according to the article written the UP researchers mentioned in this blogpost, breast cancer is the 2nd leading cancer site in the Philippines. Let the public reject the RH bill. We cannot afford the health costs of these harmful effects of contraceptives which the RH bill will purchase nationwide by the millions- especially the health cost of breast cancer.