A 21-year-old woman presents to your office for her well-woman examination. She has recently become sexually active and desires an effective contraceptive method. She has no medical problems, but family history is significant for breast cancer in a maternal aunt at the age of 42 years. She is worried about getting cancer from taking birth control pills. You discuss with her the risks and benefits of contraceptive pills.
You tell her that which of the following neoplasms has been associated with the use of oral contraceptives?a. Breast cancer
COC pills have been extensively studied to determine if there is an increased risk of neoplasms or cancer with use of these medications. Epidemiologic studies demonstrate that use of COCs actually decreases the risk of ovarian and endometrial cancers. There have been no studies that clearly demonstrate an association between the use of COCs and breast cancer. A slightly higher risk of cervical cancer has been observed in some studies of users of oral contraceptives. The risk of developing benign liver adenomas (which can cause life-threatening hemorrhage if they rupture) is increased somewhat in users of oral contraceptives, but the risk of hepatic carcinoma is not increased.