Breast Implant Study Looks at Lifestyle

<i> From Associated Press</i>

Women who have breast enlargements tend to drink more, have more sex partners and get pregnant younger, and are more likely to have abortions, use the pill and dye their hair--factors that researchers should consider when studying the health risks of breast implants, says a study in today’s Journal of the American Medical Assn.

Linda S. Cook of Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center said her study was conducted to prod implant researchers to weigh lifestyle factors when accessing the safety of implants. She said implants could be getting the blame for health problems caused by other risk factors.

“You have to look at these factors anew in every study that you do,” she said in a telephone interview.

For example, the study said, hair dye could increase the risk of connective tissue diseases while oral contraceptives may reduce the risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Failing to consider those factors could conceal the risk arising from breast implants, the study said.