Breast Cancer & Hair Relaxers
A 2019 study by scientists with the NIH documented a link between the use of chemical hair straighteners and breast cancer. According to those findings, women who used hair relaxer products every two months or more frequently were 30 percent more likely to develop breast cancer during the course of the study.
Breast cancer is characterized by the following symptoms, according to the Mayo Clinic:
- A breast lump or thickening
- Change in the size, shape or appearance of a breast
- Changes to the skin over the breast
- A newly inverted nipple
- Peeling, scaling, crusting or flaking of the pigmented area of skin surrounding the nipple
- Redness or pitting of the skin
Though often linked to a family history of breast cancer, the Mayo Clinic describes the disease as “caused by a complex interaction of your genetic makeup and your environment.”
Risk factors for breast cancer include advanced age, obesity, drinking alcohol, having children at a later age or never having children, and exposure to radiation.
Breast cancer diagnoses are conducted via a breast exam, a mammogram (or X-ray of the breast area), and a biopsy of tissue. Breast cancer can be treated via chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, removal of the cancerous tumor (lumpectomy) or removal of the entire breast (mastectomy).
NIH Study Links Hair Relaxers & Straighteners to Cancer
According to the wide-ranging survey released in October 2022, women who “frequently” use chemical hair straighteners, also known as relaxers, were more than twice as likely to develop uterine cancer during the course of the 11-year research project. As stated in the report, “hazardous chemicals,” including those that are endocrine-interrupting and/or carcinogenic, could be responsible for the link to increased uterine cancer occurrence.
These chemicals could include:
- Bispheonol A
- Formaldehyde, and
The results are of particular concern for Black women, who use relaxer products at a higher rate than other women. Roughly three-fifths of respondents who said they used chemical relaxers frequently were Black women.
Questions About a Hair Relaxer Breast Cancer Lawsuit? Contact a Lawyer.
If you or a loved one developed breast cancer after using chemical hair relaxer products, you may want to speak with the lawyers at Johnson//Becker, PLLC. We are actively filing new product liability lawsuits across the country, and you may be entitled to financial compensation.
We offer a Free Case Evaluation. Please contact us using the form below or by calling us at (800) 279-6386. We would be honored to speak with you and respond promptly to every inquiry we receive.