Can Hair Relaxers Cause Cancer?
Chemical Hair Straightener Usage and Uterine Cancer Statistics
You may be wondering, “can hair straighteners cause cancer?” The aforementioned study reviewed data from the larger Sister Study at the National Cancer Institute. It followed 33,947 U.S. women for 11 years to identify factors for cancer and other health risks.
The study found 378 cases of uterine diagnosis. Only 1.64% of women who never used hair straightening products developed uterine cancer by age 70. However, 4.05% of women who reported using chemical hair straighteners developed uterine cancer by age 70.
This essentially indicates that uterine cancer rates may be doubled for users of chemical hair straightening and relaxer products. “The doubling rate is concerning,” said Dr. Alexandra White, lead author of the study.
Black Women May Be Affected Most Heavily By Chemical Hair Straightening Products
Black women make up the main consumer demographic for chemical hair relaxing products. This is due to societal pressures to conform to Western beauty standards, as well as desires for more cosmetic options.
This particular demographic consumes chemical hair straightening products more than women of other races. Black women constituted just 7.4% of those in the study, yet they accounted for 60% of those who reported using chemical hair straightener products in the previous year.
Not only that, they begin using them much earlier in life, and may use multiple different products at the same time. This combination of factors may place black women at increased risk of developing uterine cancer from chemical hair relaxing products.
“Because Black women use hair straightening or relaxer products more frequently, and tend to initiate use at earlier ages than other races and ethnicities, these findings may be even more relevant for them” - Che-Jung, Ph.D., co-author of the study and a research fellow at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
What are the Symptoms of Uterine Cancer? How Do I Know if I Should File a Chemical Hair Relaxer Lawsuit?
Uterine Cancer Signs & Symptoms
You should seek medical treatment immediately if you used a chemical hair straightener or relaxer product and are noticing any of these symptoms:
- Pain or cramping in the pelvic region or the area below your belly
- Frequent or prolonged vaginal bleeding, especially for women over the age of 40
- Vaginal bleeding or spotting between periods (before or after menopause)
- Unusual or abnormal discharge in postmenopausal women
The chemical compounds in hair relaxer products are being linked with many medical conditions and emergencies, including uterine fibroids, preterm deliveries, endometriosis, and breast cancer.
In addition to seeking medical treatment, you should speak with a lawyer to learn what you can do about filing a lawsuit. Your attorney can help trace the injuries to the product(s) that caused the medical condition. They can also research the laws to determine what compensation you may be eligible for.
You should contact an attorney as soon as possible, as filing deadlines and other restrictions may apply.
How Can an Attorney Help Me?
A lawyer can help provide the legal services and skills that the average citizen just isn’t trained to handle. Your attorney can help by:
- Reviewing the facts surrounding your cancer diagnosis
- Researching the laws that apply to your claim
- Gathering the necessary evidence and documents
- Negotiating with the other side on your behalf
- Formulating a strong legal strategy for trial
- Obtaining the maximum amount of damages available under law
It may be difficult to approach a hair straightener uterine cancer lawsuit on your own. Contact the attorneys at Osborne & Francis for a free, no-obligation consultation to review your case.