IVF treatment increases risk of breast cancer, major study finds

In preparation for IVF, women are given drugs to stimulate the ovaries into producing more eggs  
In preparation for IVF, women are given drugs to stimulate the ovaries into producing more eggs   Credit: Science Photo Library RF 

IVF treatment increases the risk of going on to develop breast cancer, a new study suggests.

Data from more than 626,000 women over 21 years found links indicating that women over 40 who undergo the treatment are 65 per cent more likely to develop the disease.

The increased risk across all ages was 10 per cent.

In preparation for IVF, women are given drugs to stimulate the ovaries into producing more eggs.

This also means increased levels of oestrogen in the body, which scientists believe may explain the cancer link.

A team at Copenhagen University tracked 59,000 women who gave birth after undergoing fertility treatment, then compared them with  567,000 women of equal age who had a child naturally....

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