Wednesday, June 7

DES Studies

Decades ago, my grandmother, knowningly, became one of many to enter a control group in a research study. At the time she gave birth to my mother, other ladies were being given DES to help assist in their labors. (or something of that nature) My grandmother did NOT recieve the drug. Now, years later, (my mother is 63) the Boston Unversity School of Medicine has been tracking and documenting the association of DES to different forms of cancer in women and their sons. I have been sent the questionaire for 14 years now. (I am 31) Every five years they update any medical conditions, concerns, problems etc.. in the control group and the test group.
I am honored to be a part of something that started so long ago and hopefully is being used for future improvements in medicine. My daughter, will, when she is old enough, be able to continue with the study as well.

"The Slone Epidemiology Center is participating in a collaborative follow-up study of the long-term health effects of diethylstilbestrol (DES) exposure, with 4 other academic research centers and the National Cancer Institute. All previously studied cohorts of DES-exposed and unexposed persons were identified and combined in 1992 to create a cohort of mothers, a cohort of daughters, and a cohort of sons. The mothers’ cohort received one questionnaire (1994) and has been followed passively for deaths since that time. The sons’ and daughters’ cohort have been followed by periodic mailed questionnaire (1994, 1997, 2001) for assessment of changes in health status and changes in exposures. Disease rates in the exposed cohorts will be compared with disease rates in the unexposed cohorts. The principal aim is to evaluate whether DES exposure increases the incidence of cancer in the offspring of women who took DES while pregnant. In particular, we will evaluate the relation of prenatal DES exposure to risk of breast cancer in the daughters and risk of prostate cancer in the sons. Investigators at the Slone Center have led analyses and manuscript preparation on DES in relation to infertility in the daughters, breast cancer in the daughters, and hypospadias in the grandsons."
-The Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University

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