Chemical hair straightening merchandise are linked to an elevated threat of uterine most cancers in a brand new examine
Scientists are revealing new particulars concerning the hyperlink between using sure hair straighteners, resembling chemical relaxers and straighteners, and an elevated threat of most cancers in girls.
Earlier research have proven that hair straightening chemical substances are linked to an elevated threat of sure hormone-related cancers, together with breast and ovarian most cancers, and now a brand new examine hyperlinks using hair straightening merchandise to an elevated threat of uterine most cancers . The researchers famous that black girls could also be extra affected as a consequence of larger use of the merchandise.
The examine, revealed Monday within the Journal of the Nationwide Most cancers InstituteIt’s estimated that amongst girls who haven’t used chemical hair straighteners previously 12 months, 1.6% develop uterine most cancers by age 70, however about 4% of ladies who incessantly use such hair straighteners develop uterine most cancers earlier than 70 years. .
This discovering “additionally means that uterine most cancers is certainly uncommon. Nonetheless, doubling the chance does elevate some concern,” mentioned Chandra Jackson, examine creator and analysis fellow on the Nationwide Institute of Environmental Well being Sciences.
“On this examine, girls who used incessantly previously yr had greater than twice the chance of uterine most cancers,” she mentioned. Frequent use was outlined as greater than 4 occasions within the earlier yr.
The brand new examine contains knowledge on practically 34,000 girls in america between the ages of 35 and 74 who stuffed out questionnaires about their use of sure hair merchandise, together with perms, dyes, relaxers and straighteners. Researchers from the Nationwide Institutes of Well being additionally tracked the incidence of most cancers diagnoses within the examine group.
The researchers discovered a powerful hyperlink between hair straightening merchandise and instances of uterine most cancers, however using different hair merchandise — resembling dyes and perms or perms — was not related to uterine most cancers.
The examine knowledge additionally confirmed that the hyperlink between hair straightening merchandise and instances of uterine most cancers was most pronounced for black girls, who made up solely 7.4% of the examine individuals, however 59.9% of those that had ever used straighteners.
A number of components possible play a task within the frequent use of hair straighteners: Eurocentric magnificence requirements, social pressures on black and Latina girls in office parameters related to microaggressions and the specter of discrimination, together with the specified versatility in altering hairstyles and self-expression.
“The underside line is that the burden of publicity is larger amongst black girls,” Jackson mentioned.
“Based mostly on the literature within the area, we all know that hair merchandise marketed on to black kids and girls include many chemical substances linked to hormone disruption, and these merchandise marketed to black girls have been proven to have harsher chemical compounds,” she mentioned. “Moreover, we all know that black girls have a tendency to make use of a number of merchandise on the identical time, which can contribute to black girls on common having larger concentrations of those hormone-disrupting chemical substances of their methods.”
The researchers didn’t gather info on the manufacturers or elements of the hair merchandise the ladies used, however they wrote within the paper that some chemical substances present in straighteners could contribute to the elevated incidence of uterine most cancers seen of their examine.
“To our information, that is the primary epidemiological examine to look at the connection between straightener use and uterine most cancers,” mentioned Alexandra White, head of the Environmental and Most cancers Epidemiology Group on the Nationwide Institute of Environmental Well being Sciences and lead creator of the examine. – says the press launch Monday.
“Extra analysis is required to substantiate these findings in several populations, to find out whether or not hair merchandise contribute to well being disparities in uterine most cancers, and to establish particular chemical substances which will enhance most cancers threat in girls.”
Among the elements in hair straighteners, particularly these mostly used and marketed to black and Hispanic girls, are hormone-disrupting chemical substances, mentioned Tamara James-Todd, an epidemiologist on the Harvard Chan Faculty of Public Well being. , who was not concerned within the new examine however independently led a number of the earliest research that discovered hyperlinks between hair merchandise and most cancers.
“They alter the conventional hormonal processes of our physique. So it is sensible to have a look at hormonally mediated cancers,” she mentioned, including that chemical substances that disrupt hormones can even have an effect on different components of the physique.
“The issue is that the results of those chemical substances might not be restricted to hormonal processes, however they’ll additionally have an effect on different methods, together with our immune and vascular methods. Understanding how these chemical substances work exterior of the hormonal system remains to be a brand new and rising space of analysis,” James-Todd advised CNN.
“So it might be that these chemical substances work by altering not solely hormonal responses, but in addition by altering immune and even vascular responses,” she mentioned. “All of those processes are related to most cancers.”
Whereas the brand new examine is “properly completed” and exhibits a hyperlink between chemical hair straightening merchandise and an elevated threat of uterine most cancers, it can not decide that the merchandise instantly trigger the most cancers, Dr. Otis Brawley, a professor on the Johns Hopkins College Bloomberg Faculty of Public Well being and former chief medical officer of the American Most cancers Society, advised CNN in an e mail.
“It could not present causation, it could be pure affiliation,” mentioned Brawley, who was not concerned within the new examine.
Nonetheless, “the query of how we’ll settle it’s tough. The scientific excellent is a randomized trial of 40,000 or so; 20,000 commonly use a hair straightener and 20,000 have by no means used a hair straightener and have by no means used it and adopted it for 20 years,” he mentioned, including that at this level “science cannot give a greater reply than” a current examine .
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