Several media outlets sort of quoted my testimony against HB 2945 in the Texas State House Affairs Committee on Wednesday. However, they proved Mark Twain’s assertion that there are “lies, damned lies, and statistics.”
In my testimony against HB 2945, I also pointed to the National Cancer Institute’s webpage, “Reproductive History and Breast Cancer Risk,” which outlines the protective effect of pregnancy. After all, the only women and girls receiving this information are pregnant women and girls!
Unfortunately, Representative Farrar focused on the “peer review” status of the Mabye article (“Did it go through the Medline or PubMed?”), ignoring the NCI data.
In that (yes, Jessica, it’s “peer reviewed”) New England Journal of Medicine article, the authors note that, while their study found no increased risk overall, there is a protective effect of pregnancy and an increased risk for some women: “Induced abortion had no overall effect on the risk of breast cancer, but we found a statistically significant increase in risk among women with a history of second-trimester abortion.” This was a small number of cases, but it was also in spite of the authors’ acknowledging that unknown thousands of unrecorded abortions ( those before 1973 computerization of records) were probably not accounted for.
From the Texas Tribune:
Dr. Beverly Nuckols, a family doctor from New Braunfels and board member of Texas Alliance for Life, testified against the bill. She cited a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine in 1997 that showed pregnancy decreases the risk of breast cancer.
“No one would prescribe pregnancy to prevent breast cancer,” Nuckols said. “We’re just letting them know that if they have a risk factor in their family, this pregnancy may cut their risk of breast cancer in half.”
via House Panel Debates Changes to Booklet on Abortion | The Texas Tribune.
Austin Chronicle, “A Woman’s Right to Know the Truth”
Keep them awake with the truth and you will sleep soundly, keep up the good fight.