Evid Based Nurs 7:122 doi:10.1136/ebn.7.4.122
  • Causation

Review: spontaneous or induced abortion is not associated with development of breast cancer

 Q What is the association between spontaneous or induced abortion and the development of breast cancer?


GraphicData sources:

Medline, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, and PubMed (to 2003); review articles; and discussions with colleagues.

GraphicStudy selection and assessment:

published or unpublished epidemiological studies that included ⩾100 women with incident invasive breast cancer in countries with liberal abortion laws; and systematically sought information on every woman’s reproductive history, specifically previous spontaneous and induced abortions.


breast cancer.


53 studies (n = 83 000) met the inclusion criteria: 13 prospective cohort and record linkage studies (n = 44 000) and 40 retrospective population or hospital case-control studies (n = 39 000). Only the results of prospective studies are reported here. A nested case-control approach was used to pool individual data from 12 prospective studies by randomly selecting up to 4 controls for …

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