Oral Contraception and Dementia : Oooops I Forgot to Take My Pill Today
BELGIUM, April 8, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Researchers at the University of Ghent, conducting a long-term study on 1,300 healthy women aged 35 to 55 living in a small town in Belgium, have observed that those women who take oral contraceptives may have more plaque (a hard, fatty deposit) buildup in their arteries.
Atherosclerotic plaque is comprised of cholesterol, bacteria and calcium which adheres to the inner lining of arteries.
Approximately 81 percent of participants had taken birth control pills for at least a year at some point in their lives, and 27 percent were currently taking the contraceptives.
The researchers conducted ultrasound examinations of the participants' leg and neck arteries to measure levels of plaque buildup. Every 10 years of oral contraceptive use was correlated with a 20 to 30 percent increase in plaque buildup.
According to lead researcher Ernst Rietzschel, this amount of plaque buildup is cause for concern because of increased risk of heart disease and stroke, and the study indicates a need to conduct new investigation into the safety of oral contraceptives.
"It's incredible that a drug which has been taken by 80 percent of women ... is almost bereft of any long-term outcome safety data," Rietzschel said in a NaturalNews report.
Cerebrovascular disease (blocked arteries in the neck and brain) is also a significant cause of dementia in the aging population.(see this study) We have also know that combination therapy with estrogen/progesterone for post-menopausal women increased the risk for dementia since 2003. Why would we assume that this same combination estrogen/progesterone therapy ("The Pill") doesn't eventually increase the risk for the younger women who may take these drugs for up to 25 years in some cases? Based on studies such as this, I predict an epidemic of dementia in women in the next decades to come, some of which we may already be seeing. With this information available, why is no one else is "connecting the dots" here?