Hair dye, straighteners might boost breast cancer risk, especially for black women

Henrietta Strickland
December 6, 2019

But many experts say that the results can be the same if a product is frequently being used by the consumer.

Each woman involved in the study enrolled in the Sister Study, which recruited breast cancer-free women whose sisters had been diagnosed with the disease.

Researchers say the risk for straightener use didn't vary by race, but noted that 75 percent of the black women observed reported using the products.

That risk was even higher among black women who dyed their hair every one or two months.

According to PCPC, in the study, numerous associations linking hair dyes/straighteners and breast cancer are not statistically significant; furthermore, the association reported for current use of permanent hair dye and breast cancer are not seen when past use of hair dye is taken into account.

"Hair dyes are one of the most thoroughly studied consumer products on the market".

Scientists do say that although there is prior evidence to back up the study's findings, there still needs to be more research. "Overall, these results support the hypothesis that hair dye and straightener use, which are highly prevalent exposures, could play a role in breast carcinogenesis". "While it is too early to make a firm recommendation, avoiding these chemicals might be one more thing women can do to reduce their risk of breast cancer", Dale Sandler, co-author of the study, said in a statement. But findings from other human studies on the association between hair dyes and straighteners and cancer have been inconsistent.

For perspective, across the United States about 1 in 8 women will develop an invasive breast tumour over their lifetime. "No, it is not caused by your deodorant or your underwire bras or wearing your cellphone in your sports bra when you work out". "However, as the article readily admits, more study is necessary".

"There are many points that I take issue with in this study", said Dr. Lauren Cassell, chief of breast surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. One fact which can not be ignored about this health study is that it's been done on fewer than 10% of black women just for once that too more than eight years on an average.

In this case, the researchers went looking amongst a cohort of people who have breast cancer in the family - so ones who are already in a higher risk group.

A study from the International Journal of Cancer, published on December 3, has found that there may be a link between harmful chemicals in those products and breast cancer.

Time reports, the study followed 46,700 US women between the ages of 35 to 74 to ask them questions about their lifestyle-including their hair product use.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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