Oncologist Urges Caution In Using Contraceptives To Prevent Breast Cancer

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During an event organised by Beulah World Initiative in collaboration with Covenant University’s CApiC-ACE to mark Breast Cancer Awareness Month in 2023, Dr. Temitope Olatunji-Agunbiade, a Consultant Radiation and Clinical Oncologist at Lagos State University Teaching Hospital(LASUTH), warned women against the use of contraceptive pills as a measure to reduce the incidence of breast cancer.

Dr. Olatunji-Agunbiade delivered this cautionary message at the breast cancer awareness event titled ‘Keeping Her in the Picture,’ held in Ota, Ogun State. She opined that breast cancer affects both young and older women, and is a leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women, accounting for 26.7 percent of all cancer cases in females.

The oncologist pointed to recent research indicating that contraceptive use for pregnancy prevention is a significant contributor to breast cancer in the country. She stated that all contraceptives sometimes lead to cancer and they are not safe for human consumption.

Dr. Olatunji-Agunbiade however added that early detection could make breast cancer potentially curable, and emphasised the importance of regular check-ups, breast self-examinations, mammography, and lifestyle modifications to reduce the prevalence of the disease.

In addition to discussing breast cancer’s clinical features and early detection, the oncologist outlined various treatment methods: surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and targeted therapy.

Chichi Ononiwu, Founder and Coordinator of Beulah World Initiative (BWI), highlighted the significance of their partnership with CApiC-ACE, and their mission to advance the quality of life in rural and suburban communities in Sub-Saharan Africa, with a focus on health, leadership development, and education support. She urged women to seek medical attention if they notice any abnormal changes in their bodies.

Professor Emeka Iweala, Director of CApiC-ACE at Covenant University, emphasised the centre’s commitment to breast cancer research. He noted that their goal is to develop safe and effective methods for preventing, detecting, diagnosing, treating, and ultimately curing breast cancer. Additionally, he mentioned that the Federal Government is actively supporting cancer research in collaboration with institutions like CApiC-ACE, funded through a World Bank loan to Nigeria.

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