Drug Injury

Depo-Provera® Breast Cancer Risk

A new study in the medical journal Cancer Research has found that Depo-Provera®, an injectable form of birth control, is linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. The birth control, which contains depo-medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA)–a form of the synthetic hormone progestin–can more than double a woman’s risk of developing invasive breast cancer if used for a year or more.

Invasive breast cancer spreads outside of the breast tissue into the lymph nodes, where it can then spread throughout the body. There are two main types of invasive breast cancer:

  • Invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC)
    With IDC, the most common form of invasive breast cancer, the cancer cells first grow in a milk duct and later invade the breast tissue. The cancer may then remain in the tissue or spread to other tissues in the body.
  • Invasive lobular carcinoma (IILC)
    Accounting for 10 to 15 percent of invasive breast cancers, IILC starts in the milk glands and then spreads in the same manner as IDC. This form of breast cancer is often detected as a mass or thickening in the breast tissue instead of a lump.

Global Research Shows Cancer Link

The link between DMPA use and the development of breast cancer also has been shown in several international studies that were conducted in Kenya, New Zealand, Thailand, Mexico, and Costa Rica.

Depo-Provera, which was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in October 1992, is injected by a patient into her thigh or buttocks four times a year. MSNBC reports that 1.2 million U.S. women are using Depo-Provera.

We Want to Help

If you or a loved one used Depo-Provera and developed breast cancer, our attorneys want to help you. Call us now or fill out a free initial consultation form.

Depo-Provera® is a registered trademark of Pfizer, Inc.

This law firm is not associated with, sponsored by, or affiliated with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Pfizer, Inc., Cancer Research, or MSNBC.