Nicotine linked to breast cancer risk, study finds

STL Health & Fitness
6 October 2010

There are many reasons to stop smoking, but a recent study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute may give women another reason not to light up. Researchers have suspected for a long time that smoking increases the risk of breast cancer, but that risk is typically associated with other carcinogens in cigarettes, rather than nicotine. However, this study took a closer look at nicotine specifically, and it found a clear association with breast cancer risk.

The study examined human breast cancer tumors and found the cells had large numbers of receptors which nicotine was able to attach to when compared with normal cells. They also found that when normal cells were treated with nicotine, nicotine promoted the development of cancer characteristics. Interestingly, the study also found that women who smoke and use hormone replacement therapy containing estrogen and progestins have twice the risk of developing breast cancer compared to nonsmoking women on hormone replacement therapy.

Even if women do not smoke, they still could be putting themselves and their babies at risk. Studies have found women who are exposed to cigarette smoke have nicotine traces in their breast milk. Avoidance of secondhand smoke becomes that much more important for expectant mothers who live or associate with someone who smokes.

These findings only add to other known risks for women who smoke. Those include increased risk of lung cancer, oral cancers, cervical and vulvar cancers, blood clots, high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, osteoporosis and fractures of the hip and spine, infertility, abnormal menstruation, early onset of menopause and respiratory diseases including asthma and emphysema.

Those who quit smoking experience immediate and long-term benefits including improved circulation, lowered blood pressure and a lower risk of developing cancer as each year passes.

This study shows that as a woman, there is even more pressure to give up smoking.  Breast cancer is one of the most traumatic cancers that a woman can have, the reality of a losing a breast or a having a full mastectomy, must surely encourage women to stop smoking. The study also shows the harm when pregnant of secondhand smoke to the baby.  At The Harley Street Stop Smoking Clinic we see a number of female clients that want to stop smoking due to pregnancy or wanting to have a baby.  This is an ideal time to stop smoking with hypnosis as the woman has a very good reason to quit smoking.  Our expert hypnotherapists at the London stop smoking clinic on Harley Street have treated many women to stop smoking and have a very sympathetic manner.  The Harley Street Stop Smoking Clinic has developed its own unique stop smoking program using advanced hypnosis to stop smoking and have acheived great success.  Many of our clients come from recommendations for stop smoking London at the Harley Street Stop Smoking Clinic in London.

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