June 03, 2009

Foul Smelling Earwax (and/or Armpits) Suggest Increased Potential Risk of Breast Cancer

Researchers in Japan recently published a research article in the June 2009 edition of The FASEB Journal that explains why females with foul smelling earwax as well as armpits may be at risk for breast cancer. Apparently, the secreting glands of the breast tissue are similar to the cerumen-producing glands of the ear canal and sweat-producing glands of the armpits. Apparently, one of the genes, ABCC11 WT variant, is responsible for causing breast cancer. This genetic variant is also responsible for foul smelling armpits (osmidrosis) as well as smelly and wet earwax.

As such, it is felt that if a woman suffers from malodorous armpits and earwax, she may be at higher risk for breast cancer.

Read more about it here.

This factoid was also mentioned in Nancy Snyderman's book, "Medical Myths That Can Kill You: And the 101 Truths That Will Save, Extend, and Improve Your Life."
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Fauquier ENT

Dr. Christopher Chang is a private practice otolaryngology, head & neck surgeon specializing in the treatment of problems related to the ear, nose, and throat. Located in Warrenton, VA about 45 minutes west of Washington DC, he also provides inhalant allergy testing/treatment, hearing tests, and dispenses hearing aids.

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