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Use of Hair Dye Linked to Significant Increase in Breast Cancer Risk, Especially Among African-American Women

By Burg Simpson
December 9, 2019
2 min read

The use of permanent hair dye is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer, especially in African-American women, according to a recent study in the International Journal of Cancer.

Researchers found that permanent hair dye use was associated with a 9% higher breast cancer risk among all women. The researchers further broke down their results by ethnicity, including “Non-Hispanic White, Black, Hispanic, or Other.” Among non-Hispanic white women, permanent hair dye use was associated with a 7% higher breast cancer risk. Among African-American women, the risk significantly increases. According to the study, “[i]n black women, any permanent dye use in the 12 months before enrollment was associated with a 45% higher breast cancer risk.” Further, “black women who used dye at least every 5-8 weeks had a 60% higher breast cancer risk.” Researchers also found an increased risk of breast cancer associated with the use of darker hair dyes specifically in African-American women. This finding is consistent with a previously published study. However, smaller studies have not observed an association with hair dye and an elevated risk of breast cancer.

The authors concluded “as hair dye and straighteners are common exposures, these findings have the potential for substantial public health impact.” Indeed, as reported in the study, “it has been estimated that more than one-third of women above the age of 18 in the United States use hair dye.” These dyes are reported to contain thousands of chemicals, some of which are carcinogenic and have been linked to cancer in animal studies.

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with breast cancer after long term use of hair dye or chemical straighteners, contact the experienced product liability attorneys in Burg Simpson’s Cincinnati office today. Our award winning team of compassionate lawyers have spent years fighting drug companies and others who refuse to take responsibility for harm they cause. Let us fight for you. Call 513-852-5600 or fill out our contact form for a free, no-obligation consultation today.

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