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Birth Control Pills and Longevity

Posted by bmagnus On March - 12 - 2010

A new report in the British Medical Journal gives us the results of a 39 year study involving over 46,000 women. The shocking results: in the long term, women who have taken birth control pills may live longer!

While there was a short term increase in risk from “earlier data”, risks declined over time. Women who took the pill had a reduced risk of all cancers, including “main gynecological cancers combined.” This is a great surprise, considering that women have been told for decades that to get a prescription for birth control pills, they must submit to annual screening for cervical cancer and pre-cancerous conditions. Women on the pill also had lower risk of heart disease and “all circulatory disease.” Considering that heart disease and cancer are the #1 and #2 causes of death respectively in American women accounting for roughly 48% of deaths, this is an important finding.

One caution, “The study continues to find a higher rate of violent or accidental death among oral contraceptive users compared with never users. The authors are unable to explain this persistent finding.”

One Response to “Birth Control Pills and Longevity”

  1. […] morning, I was writing a post over at Age Against the Machine on British research showing that oral contraceptives reduce women’s risk of death from cancer and cardiovascular disease. Those happen to be the top two causes of death for American women, so it’s a big deal. And […]