by Steven Ertelt
May 6, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A new study released last month intending to cast doubt on the link between abortion and breast cancer is meaningless because of a number of flaws. That’s the view of a representative of a national doctors organization who reviewed the study and its results.
Published in the April 23 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, a JAMA journal, new the study involved researchers following women over a period of 10 years.
The women were asked about whether they had abortions or miscarriages during that time and whether they developed breast cancer afterwards. Several critics, including the world’s top researcher on the abortion-breast cancer link, said the study contained numerous flaws and problems.
Andrew Schlafly, general counsel for the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, agreed and said that the study did not survey the right people.
"The average age of diagnoses of breast cancer in America is 61 years old," Schlafly told WorldNetDaily. "But the average age of participants in this study was only 42 years old, too young for the average person to develop breast cancer."
"This study is as meaningless as drawing conclusions about heart disease by looking at teenagers," he added, explaining that the study "deliberately excluded women who had had abortions and then died from breast cancer."
He also complained to WND that the study made it appear abortion is safe when it actually presents women a host of physical and mental health problems.
"The research data show that abortion causes a sharp increase in the deadly PR-negative breast cancer," Schlafly told the news site. "The press reports concealed this alarming result, making it look like abortion is safe. The report’s abstract concealed this important result also."
He also said the researchers excluded women who developed breast cancer early in the study.
"So those who were hurt most by their abortions were excluded, and this skewed the results towards a claim that abortion is safe," he said.
Some of the other problems Schlafly pointed out included not following up on women who left blank answers about previous abortions, confusion in wording on the forms between abortions and spontaneous abortions (miscarriages), and that none of the researchers involved are oncologists (one was a nutritionist).
Joel Brind, president of the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute, who told LifeNews.com last month that "This isn’t the first time that Harvard Nurses Study researchers  have produced the wrong epidemiological results."
"They were wrong about combined hormone replacement therapy reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke, and they’re wrong about abortion," he said.
Brind, a professor at New York’s Baruch College, pointed out that breast cancer cases have risen 40 percent since abortion was made virtually unlimited in the 1973 Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade.
He said researchers should have analyzed only the abortions that occurred early in the study, allowing enough time after the abortion to see if breast cancer developed
In 1996, Brind and other researchers conducted analysis of all the major studies done in the field to that time.
They concluded that women who had an abortion before their first term child had a 50% increased risk of developing breast cancer while women who had an abortion after their first child sustained a 30% increased risk.
"I see no reason why this study would change my opinion that having an abortion increases the risk about 30% over not having gotten pregnant in the first place," Brind told the New York Times in response to the study.
“I believe also that this particular study, were the data properly handled and reported, would have come up with a result in agreement with that," he added.
A few years ago, the British Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists confirmed Brind’s study and said it contained no major flaws or errors.