Breast cancer: Both progestin-only & combined hormonal birth control may increase risk

Researchers investigated the link between hormonal contraceptive use and breast cancer risk. Photo: Unsplash

(Annie Lennon/Medical News Today) — Between 2017 and 2019, around 65% of womenTrusted Source aged 15- 49 used some sort of contraception, and 14% of them used the pill. Contraceptive pills come in two forms: the progestin-only pill and the combined pill containing both progestin and estrogen-based ingredients.

Progestin, or progestogen, is a synthetic version of progesterone, a naturally occurring hormone.

A meta-analysis from 1996 found that people taking combined contraceptives have a slightly increased risk for breast cancer within 10 years of usage.

In recent years, progestin-only methods of contraception- including pills, injectables, implants, and intrauterine devices (IUDs)- have become more popular. In England, drug prescriptions increased from 1.9 million in 2010 to 3.3 million in 2020. (…)