Skip to comments.Online Video: Noted Endocrinologist Dispels the Myth of Health Benefits of the Pill - Part 2
Posted on 08/11/2007 8:56:07 PM PDT by monomaniac
By Elizabeth O'Brien
OTTAWA, August 9, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The lecture of noted endocrinologist Dr. Maria Kraw, speaking at the Humanae Vitae Conference "A New Beginning" last year, described the serious medical risks involved in taking hormonal birth control. It also debunked the common myths of the so-called "health benefits" of the pill.
She began by noting that one of the major risks of taking hormonal contraceptives is an increased risk of cancer. Looking at 54 studies of the pill, she observed that researchers found that it caused a 24% increased risk of breast cancer. The real tragedy, however, Kraw noted, is that the greatest risk occurs right after early puberty when the breasts are still developing. Taken before a woman's first pregnancy, the hormonal contraceptive has the most negative side-effects.
Secondly, she said, 1 in every 200 Canadian women has the genetic mutation BRCA1, a disease that increases their risk of developing breast cancer by 50-80%. Women with this condition who take the pill make themselves especially vulnerable to cancer, increasing their risk by an additional 33%.
Thirdly, hormonal birth control makes the cervix more susceptible to the more dangerous strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV), a common sexually transmitted infection, and increases cervical cancer in women already carrying HPV.
As an endocrinologist, Kraw has spent a lot of time treating people with diabetes, an insulin-imbalance that makes metabolism more difficult. The progestin-only pill was found to cause a three-fold increase in the development of diabetes, while depo-provera causes a 60% increase. This in turn increases the risk of vascular disease, including high blood pressure and heart attack, even when the pill is taken at the low-dose currently being used.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases such as HIV, HPV, Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Chancroid and Syphilis also appear more commonly in users of birth control, particularly hormonal birth control, said Kraw. Recent studies, especially in Africa, show that the reproductive tract becomes more susceptible to the HIV virus when women are on hormonal birth control. In fact, the condition of those who were already HIV positive got worse after taking the pill.
A decline in bone density (osteoperosis) and lactation are yet two more side-effects of the hormonal birth control. A World Health Organization trial found that the average milk volumes of women who took oral contraceptives after having a baby declined by 42% (vs.12%) over 24 weeks.
Kraw commented, "We may think, 'Oh well, we'll just pull out the bottle here', but the majority of the developing world doesn't have that option and will either look towards formula feeds with the risk of sterilization and gut infections or look at childhood malnourishment."
Kraw concluded by debunking several of the major so-called health "benefits" of taking birth control, in particular the controlling of an irregular menstrual cycle or especially heavy menstrual bleeding. As Kraw explained, however, a woman's cycle is "a highly sensitive marker of her underlying hormonal health." Often the bleeding points to other problems such as insulin resistance that have "very marked medical consequences that go beyond the reproductive system."
By taking the pill, a woman only delays solving the problem, oftentimes causing the underlying problem to get worse over the passing years. This can create other serious problems later on when a woman finally wants to have a child.
"So it's like I've got here a huge ulcerating sore," Kraw said, "but you can't see it because I'm wearing a shirt. And so basically, I'm going to put a sweater on top so you can't see it? Does that take away my underlying cancerous ulcer? By overriding and covering up either irregular menstrual bleeding or excessively heavy bleeding, are we curing the underlying reproductive or hormonal unhealthiness? No. Is that good medicine? No."
Ironically, the information that comes with the product always lists irregular bleeding as a potential side effect. Kraw states, "In fact you are causing more trouble than you are helping erase."
As in the case of menstrual difficulties, the claim that the pill helps acne ignores the underlying problem. Excessive acne is a symptom that must by solved rather than masked. There are "effective alternative therapies," states Kraw.
Dr. Maria Kraw: Medical Consequences of Contraception - Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpCRSajdhVo&mode=related&search= Previous LifeSiteNews coverage: Online Video: Noted Endocrinologist Explains How the Birth Control Pill Causes Abortion Dr. Maria Kraw: Medical Consequences of Contraception - Part 2
Dr. Maria Kraw: Medical Consequences of Contraception - Part 4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fi8y-4q5OGU&mode=related&search=
Dr. Maria Kraw: Medical Consequences of Contraception - Part 1
Previous LifeSiteNews coverage:
Online Video: Noted Endocrinologist Explains How the Birth Control Pill Causes Abortion
Dr. Maria Kraw: Medical Consequences of Contraception - Part 2
The progestin-only pill was found to cause a three-fold increase in the development of diabetes, while depo-provera causes a 60% increase.
BTW, Depo-provera is medroxyprogesterone acetate (a progestin-only drug.)
Maria Kraw, new President of Toronto Catholic Doctors Guild is opposed to contraception. Who would’ve guessed?
I am neither pro pill nor anti pill. All drugs carry risk benefit ratios that should be discussed with your doctor. You must make the decision on what is best for you after you have unbiased information from your health care professional.
see my post #4
“Maria Kraw, new President of Toronto Catholic Doctors Guild is opposed to contraception. Who wouldve guessed?”
Yes, and who would have guessed that the medical establishment that pushed the pill on women and brushed aside all the evidence of serious side-effects for the overriding benefit of birth control were, “pro-contraception.”
Do you know how to assess evidence rationally? If Dr. Kraw is anti-contraception because of the evidence of deleterious side-effects, then she’s simply stating a professional assessment. If she’s anti-contraception before and apart from the evidence,then she’s prejudiced. But how do you know which came first?
Or did you really mean to say that because she was identified as head of a Catholic physicians’ group, she only holds her professional assessment of negative side-effects out of religious prejudice? But you don’t have any way to know how she came to these conclusions.
Therefore, your insinuation that her medical opinions don’t carry weight because she is opposed to contraception is itself a good example of bigotry, of elevating the one fact you do know about her (that she’s Catholic) over all other factors.
That, by any rational measure, looks very much like an exercise in bigotry on your part. Of course, perhaps you did find out all the details about Dr. Kraw’s life history you would need to know in order to make the insinuation you made. Perhaps.
This is the first I heard of an alleged link between the pill and osteoporosis. I thought everything pointed towards it PREVENTING it, not causing it.
Uh, cpdiii, LifeSite News is not a liberal outfit. It’s conservative, pro-life. Just a tad prejudiced, now, aren’t we?? You assumed the source was “liberal” and therefore was spinning. If you would take the time to explore the medical literature, I think you’d find a mountain of evidence supporting Kraw’s assessment. Yes, as with a lot of medical science, there are those scientists who would dispute Kraw’s assessment. She has a viewpoint, certainly. But I’ll let you in on a secret, so too do the people who have spent years now debunking those who insist that the Pill is not really good for women’s health. Most people who are pro-contraceptives come to the table with more than a few ideological commitments.
The evidence is out there. Look it up. Of course it is attacked vehemently by the pro-contraceptioners. Just like Big Tobacco for years insisted that the Surgeon General’s Report on smoking and lung cancer was special pleading and
“spinning.” Big-Contraception has been doing the same thing for decades and women are the football. It’s about time women started investigating the studies themselves. This particular report doesn’t cite them but you’ll find the studies cited via the links provided.
I'm an endocrinologist, just like Dr. Kraw. Do you?
Sorry, my post no. 7 was incomplete: you’ll find studies cited in the links provided at http://www.mayoclinicproceedings.com/pdf/8110/8110a1.pdf — which deals only with breast cancer risk; there are plenty of other sources available
Read the Headline-—no scientist would make such an outrageous claim without two lifetimes’ worth of corroborating data. She is proselytizing, plain and simple.
Yes I do. And I did. And you didn’t. Your post was not a rational assessment but an ad hominemn argument. That’s a rational assessment of your post. Perhaps you wish to evaluate the endicrinological evidence for us instead of attacking your colleague in endocrinology.
Sir, the headline was not written by Dr.Kraw. Let’s start with some rational analysis of the text. It’s a report by a journalist of a speech to a popular audience, not an article in a medical journal.
If you want to take Dr. Kraw to task, then get her professional articles and tear them apart professionally. But don’t base a professional judgment on a popular speech. She did “cite” studies but did so in a proper manner for a popular speech—asking her audience to trust her professional judgment. You would have to do exactly the same thing if you addressed a popular audience. If you were writing a medical journal article you would cite your sources professionally.
I’m sure you disagree with her reading of the studies. Fine. If you wish to take issue with her professionally, then go find her professional publications, where I’m sure she does cite studies, and tear them apart.
But what you are doing here is apples and oranges.
And that’s a rational assessment of your method of argument. You are doing exactly what she did in speaking to a popular audience, invoking your authority, speaking to a non-professinal audience (Free Republic), asking us to trust your authority in your skepticism about her interpretation of the data. But you assume that it’s obvious that she’s wrong because she did not cite studies the way one does in professional journals. Well, neither did you, but you expect us to believe you.
In summary: she has zero credibility as a scientist. End of story.
This does not merit rational analysis because like I said in my first post: NO DATA. Nothing to analyze.
Ever heard of Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy? A women does not have to be without her hormones.
I don't claim to know about everything, but nonetheless think it fair to say you are right. Numerous studies have documented an association between the Pill and higher bone density. To fail to mention this and claim only that lower bone density has been reported is not intellectually honest.
You may interested to know that the founder of Endocrinology, Claude Bernard(1813-1878), performed bioidentical hormone replacement therapy upon...himself!
Go back and read cdpiii’s post. It’s argued that this outfit behave LIKE the liberal media, not that the writer of this piece is a liberal.
It’s not the particular slant that’s the focus of cdpiii’s post—it’s that there is a very glaring slant to the article with some pretty flat statements over an issue that is anything but...
As cpdiii (how do you pronnouce that?) pointed out that the use of cherry-picking data characterizes this piece, and others: trying to appear as scientists but in realty are selling a point of view, a belief.
You don’t read well, do you. I said analysis of text, not data. The text is a news report. You pegged your analsysis on its headline. Anyone who knows anything about news writing knows that headlines exaggerate, distort, mislead.
And what kind of an argument is “NO DATA”—do you expect technical medical journal data in a popular speech? You truly do not understand the first rule of analyzing TEXTS—consider the genre, the type of text. This one is a popular journalistic piece. You fault it for not being a medical journal piece. So what! Your criticism is irrelevant.
And then you come back in the next post with an assessment of her career, dismissing her, not on the basis of science but of her “proselytizing.”
Now, for someone who has his/her knickers in a knot over absent data, it seems to me you offered nothing but an ad hominem dismissal.
She may be wrong all the way up and down Lake Ontario, but you haven’t even looked at the studies referred to in the full article at LifeSite (54 of them on breast cancer and the pill)—note, referred to, not cited, because the LifeSite article is not a medical journal. It mentions that she based her claim on 54 studies. It does not “cite” the studies in the way scientists do but cites them the way journalists do-generally, not specifically.
But you already know that she’s wrong. Not because you have analyzed those 54 studies that she analyzed and shown that her analysis is bunk, which it may of course be.
No, you know her analysis of those 54 studies has to be wrong because she has made a lot of speeches stating that hormonal contraception is bad for women. Tell me what’s wrong with the Mayo study I linked to? It was not written by proselytizers against contraception but it does conclude soberly that there’s an increased risk of breast cancer.
No, you prefer to operate out of ad hominem prejudice, which is what you have done from first to last on this thread.
You see, I’m not a trained reader of medical journals in endocrinology but I do know that the doctor who dismissed as hogwash the questions I raised about hormone replacement therapy for my wife, based on my amateur reading of popular summaries of techincal clinical evidence in “proselytizing” pro-life, natural-family-planning journals, was dead wrong when my wife suddenly found herself fighting highly agressive estrogen-linked (whatever the technical term for it is) breast cancer. A few months later the medical establishment finally admitted that, no, even the supposedly “safe” newer HRT methods weren’t so safe after all—exactly the question I was raising based on “proselytizing” prolife, NFP sources. Had she not discovered the lump accidentally when she did, she would be dead now.
So, you see, when the big-wig medical professionals get snooty about those who have a bit of passionate skepticism about all the monkeying around with hormones, I think of the doctor who oh-so-professionally said, “oh, they don’t know what they’re talking about, after all, they’re already committed anti-contraceptionists.”
Is it just possible that they take that position because of some evidence, because of studies, because of data?
I’m glad your wife is ok.