Contraceptive pill uptake linked to rise in prostate cancer

Researchers compared country-specific cancer data for 2008 from the International Agency for Research on Cancer with variance in global contraceptive use, as outlined in a 2007 UN report.

“In this study we have shown a strong correlation between the country-specific female OC use and incidence of prostate cancer among worldwide, continent and even intra-European nations,” the authors said.

“This correlation appeared specific to OC as no association was demonstrated with other forms of contraception such as intrauterine devices, condoms or vaginal barriers.”

The association was independent of gross domestic product, the authors said, indicating it could not solely be explained by wealthier countries having higher rates of OC use and more effective prostate cancer detection.

A “plausible explanation” was that by-products of OC metabolism could be passed via urine into the environment or into