This study is the first to link cancer of the ovaries with the cleansing practice used today by millions of women worldwide .
The reason why douching boosts odds for ovarian cancer, which 20,000 women get and 14,500 die from each year, is still under investigation.
But what is known is that douching causes a surplus of harmful bacteria that can lead to yeast infections and push bacteria up into the uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries.
The NIEHS findings were arrived at by following 41,000 women in the U.S. and Puerto Rico since 2003. Subjects were between 35 and 74 years of age, each had a sister who’d been diagnosed with breast cancer, and were free of breast and ovarian cancer when they joined the study.
In July 2014, 154 subjects were found to have ovarian cancer. Women who reported that they douched the year before entering the study were almost twice as likely to have gotten ovarian cancer, the study found.
The study found no association between genital talc use and ovarian cancer.
Clarice Weinberg, lead author of the new study told Reuters, “There are a number of health reasons not to douche, and I can’t think of any reason to do it.”
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