Abortion Supervisory Committee,
Private Bag 32001,
Dear Ms Williams
Abortion Breast Cancer Link
Thank you for your letter of 17 February 2014. Right to Life is disappointed that your Committee refuses to accept the finding of the recent meta-analysis of 36 studies that have been published.
In China in 2012. The studies had revealed that there was a 44 per cent increased risk of a woman developing breast cancer after one abortion. This risk increased with the number of abortions that a woman had. There is an epidemic of breast cancer in China following the introduction of China’s one child policy.
We are aware that studies that reveal a link between abortion and breast cancer are dismissed by organisations that promote the abortion industry. In the United States there are seven States that have passed legislation making it mandatory that women seeking an abortion are informed of the link between abortion and breast cancer. Planned Parenthood has gone to court in an endeavour to prevent this information being given to women.
There have been several meta-analyses that have not shown a link. An analysis of these studies reveals that they are methodologically flawed. For example, in 2004 the British journal Lancet published a meta-analysis by Valerie Beral et al. of 52 abortion-breast cancer studies. In a meta-analysis; data is re-analysed from existing studies to show an overall trend. Results can be skewed by including studies not based on sound scientific methodology, and by ignoring studies that contradict the researchers’ desired outcome. Inexplicably, data from more than half the studies selected by Beral (28 of 52) had not even been published in peer-reviewed journals. Beral also excluded 15 peer-reviewed studies, whose findings supported the ABC link, for invalid, non-scientific reasons (e.g., the principal investigator could not be found, perhaps due to his death or retirement in the intervening 20 years). Ten of the 15 excluded studies showed a statistically significant association between abortion and breast cancer; collectively the excluded studies showed about an 80% increased risk after abortion. Furthermore, Beral included three studies known to have major methodological flaws, including one that misclassified 60,000 women as not having had abortions when government records show they did.
It is pleasing to note in the Committee’s report for 2013, its encouragement for women’s health research. Right to Life believes that it would be of benefit to women’s health, if there was research undertaken to establish, if there was a link between abortion and breast cancer. Right to life has recently written to the New Zealand Cancer Society and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation requesting that this research be undertaken in New Zealand. I would be grateful if you would advise if your Committee would support and encourage this important research.