DES DiEthylStilbestrol Resources (6)

Want to know more about the pregnancy drug DiEthylStilbestrol?

DES-molecule image
Five Scary and Shocking Facts about Diethylstilbestrol
Drug companies ignored DES studies results, the FDA did NOT ban the DES drugs, it continued to be used and many new doctors don’t even know about Diethylstilbestrol.

Online Global DES Health History Survey
Calling all DES Mothers, Daughters and Sons!
Did you take part in the new 2012 Diethylstilbestrol health history survey created by DES Action USA and open to all DES-exposed individuals worldwide.

DES Daughters
What is a DES Daughter? Who are they?
Women born between 1938 and 1978, exposed to the anti miscarriage drug Diethylstilbestrol before birth (in the womb) are defined as DES Daughters.

DES Sons
What is a DES Son? Who are they?
Men born between 1938 and 1978, exposed to the anti miscarriage drug Diethylstilbestrol before birth (in the womb) are defined as DES Sons.

1000 Thanks to our 1000 Facebook Fans !
June 21th 2012 marks a Milestone in our efforts to raise awareness of the DES drug scandal and tragedy with 1000 Fans on Facebook.

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Health compromised by DES Drug

DES Daughters Andrea Goldstein and Caitlin McCarthy interviews

YouTube video from benzestrol © courtesy of TheBostonChannel
UPDATED Jun 06, 2011 Segment Three: Medical Journal

More about DES Daughters

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NEW Global DES Health Survey gives a Voice to “Wonder Drug” Victims

DES Action Health History Survey

DES Action Australia-NSW Media Alert

Are you one of the 740,000 Australians at risk?

New global health survey gives a voice to those suffering effects of ‘wonder drug’ that devastated generations

Australians are being encouraged to take part in a landmark global health survey to help reveal the true impact of exposure to the anti-miscarriage drug, DES for DES Awareness Week (June 1 – 7). It is estimated up to 740,000 Australians are have been exposed to the drug, which was prescribed from 1940 – 1970 across the country.

“If you know, or even suspect that you, your mother or grandmother might have taken this drug – this is your chance to be part of a survey that will reveal what the real health impacts this drug has had on three generations of families,” says Carol Devine, DES Action Australia-NSW coordinator, herself a DES daughter.

The survey, by DES Action USA, will give Australians the opportunity to speak out about the health impact of their exposure, which includes cancer of the vagina, cervix or breast, birth complications and infertility.

Mrs Devine is hoping the survey will help answer many of the health questions plaguing the DES community.

“Our organisation has fielded hundreds of enquiries in response to DES Awareness Weeks from right across Australia and often we are asked if a particular health problem might be related to DES exposure and often the answer is – no one knows. By working with researchers in the USA we will be able to get some real answers, and know the proper healthcare to detect these conditions earlier and potentially save lives “says Devine.

Touted a “wonder drug” in its time, DES was prescribed to pregnant women between 1940 and 1971 (and sometimes beyond). It is now known to increase the risk of certain cancers and reproductive problems in those women prescribed DES and their children of that pregnancy.

Dr Jules Black, DES knowledgeable obstetrician and gynaecologist and medical spokesperson for the DES Action group in NSW, is urging women and men who may be DES exposed to be vigilant with their reproductive health – and take action.

“It is vital that people affected get the specialised health care they need. It is important that DES exposed women get the proper screenings to detect cancers early and women exposed to DES in the womb have “high risk” care for their pregnancies. Men exposed to DES in the womb, with increased risk of genital abnormalities, should do regular testicular self-checks and report anything unusual to a doctor, such as fertility or urogenital problems” he says.

June 15 is the deadline for this survey and Australians affected by DES can participate online at DES Action USA

There are many people affected by DES who may not be aware of the harm caused by DES and the health care they need. More information is available at DES Action Australia-NSW or by contacting them 02.98754820.

HEALTH CHECK LIST: If you tick ‘yes’ next to any of the following, ask your doctor about possible exposure to DES:

ü  Does your mother recall having previous miscarriages or being prescribed medications while pregnant? DES was most commonly prescribed to prevent miscarriage and for pregnancy complications such as bleeding. It was also known as “stilboestrol”.

ü  If unable to ask your mother, does your health history show a series of reproductive problems such as cancer, infertility, or miscarriages?

ü  Does your mother remember only being given “hormones” during pregnancy? It is worthwhile having a check-up, informing the doctor your mother was given hormones during pregnancy. Progesterone, another hormone, may have also been used to prevent miscarriage and research has shown no problems with this.


For more information, please contact:

DES Action Australia-NSW

DES Action USA

Effets transgénérationnels des perturbateurs endocriniens: les leçons du DES

Endocrine Disruptors and Lessons from DES Diethylstilbestrol

Pour plus d’information sur la journée tenue à l’Assemblée Nationale le 10 Avril 2012 vous pouvez lire cet article: Les Perturbateurs Endocriniens publié le 26 Avril dernier.

Intervention du Dr Annie J. Sasco, Médecin épidémiologiste du cancer, sur le thème “Effets transgénérationnels des perturbateurs endocriniens: les leçons du DES” lors de la table-ronde organisée par WECF le 10 avril sur le thème “Perturbateurs endocriniens, effets et mécanismes d’action de la conception à la maturité”.

Le Distilbène DES, en savoir plus

Endocrine Disruptors: DES Lessons

On Tuesday 10th April 2012, the French National Assembly hosted a debate around the harmful effects of endocrine disruptors to convince governments to take action.  French and foreign Endocrine Disruptors (ED) specialists attended the event, gave presentations and discussed the many issues associated with ED.  Among them was Dr. Annie J. Sasco , Cancer epidemiologist, INSERM Research Director, University of Bordeaux, France,  who worked on the transgenerational effects of endocrine disruptors, more specifically those of DES: “I am very pessimistic. For 30 years, cancer has doubled in the world. The DES tragedy is not enough. Even though DES was registered in 1939 in Britain on the poisons’ list, and it had been proven it was ineffective for the prevention of miscarriage since 1953, nothing prevented this drug from being widely produced and prescribed. It has been recognized as a carcinogenic drug since 1974, and it is now proven to have effects on the third generation in terms of risk of cancer, including ovarian and genital malformation rate 18 times higher than normal. We’ve just banned Bisphenol A in baby bottles yet the risks were known since the 30s. Another example is hormone replacement therapy: its extended use to 10 years of treatment is associated with an increased risk of cancer. ”

You can find more information about this debate by reading this article published on April, 26th (approximate translation by Google).

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Diethylstilbestrol Clear Cell Adenocarcinoma Vaginal Cancer

Elevated risk for this type of cancer in DES Daughters as they age

DES and Cancer: the Never Ending Story

Diethylstilbestrol DES clear cell adenocarcinoma CCA vaginal cancer41 years ago, a connection between DES exposure and cancer in DES daughters was established.  Cases of Clear Cell Adenocarcinoma (CCA) of the vagina were diagnosed in an age group never before found to develop it. At the time the peak incidence of CCA in DES Daughters was in the late teens and early 20s. Most young women with CCA of the vagina have a history of prenatal exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES). DES daughters were told by physicians that the risk was low when you reach your 30s and you can still read today on some websites that “if a DES daughter has not developed this cancer by age 30, she will not develop it”.

But today, DES daughters cancer fears are confirmed and justified as the findings and conclusions of a new report by CDC researchers suggest an elevated risk for this vaginal/cervical cancer in DES Daughters as they age.

When researchers first linked prenatal DES exposure to vaginal / cervical cancer in a small group of women, soon after, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) notified physicians throughout the U.S.A. that DES should not be prescribed to pregnant women (note that it wasn’t banned!). In Europe, the drug continued to be prescribed to pregnant women until 1978. So even though this report says “elevated risk among women born between 1947 and 1971 in the United States”, it should read “among all women born between 1947 and 1978 in countries where DES was prescribed”. In the United States alone it is estimated that five to 10 million people were exposed to DES between 1938 and 1971.

When will this stop?  The statement “The more I learn the less I know” really seems to apply to the DES tragedy. As we learn more about the devastating health effects of diethylstibestrol, we begin to become more aware of the limits of our knowledge regarding the long term effects not only for DES daughters but also DES sons and the DES 3rd generation (children of DES daughters and sons). DES truly is a never ending story!

Wherever you are stay safe and remind your GP that DES daughters need yearly Pap test and pelvic exam as well as regular health screening and adequate care!

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New England Journal of Medicine Report

Diethylstilbestrol in utero exposure and cancers risk, 2011

From Maryland – Exposure to Diethylstilbestrol in the womb raises a woman’s risk of many cancers, according to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Researchers studied over 6500 women, 4600 of whom were exposed to DES in the womb. Results showed that this exposure significantly increased risk of many cancers and fertility problems, including a 40x increased risk of clear-cell adenocarcinoma, 8x increased risk of neonatal death, 2.4x increased risk of infertility and a 1.8x increased risk of breast cancer.

Video from Insidermedicine In 60.

Watch our compilation of DES Videos in English on YouTube via the Diethylstilboestrol Channel.

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Beating Cancer One Lap at a Time

DES Daughter Susan Helmrich is one of the best swimmers in the world in her age group

Susan Helmrich is one of the best swimmers in the world in her age group. She’s also a three-time cancer survivor and a victim of one of the greatest drug tragedies in history. With luck, determination, great medical care, the support of family and friends and the benefits of the sport of swimming, Susan has fought to escape the deadly legacy of a supposed wonder drug turned nightmare.

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SlideShow DES Adverts

Back in the 1950’s and 1960’s, doctors were the target for most drug advertising campaigns including DES

DES Adverts Information



Back in the 1950’s and 1960’s, doctors were the target for most drug advertising campaigns including DES as shows this Flickr album.

Drug companies supplied hundreds of doctors with samples to give to their female patients, thus creating a market for the drug (in the case of diethylstilbestrol even before it was approved by the FDA).

Somehow DES set the template of “How To” market a dangerous drug to women. In 1948, diethylstilbestrol was advertised as the “Wonder Drug” recommended for all pregnancies. The face of a cherubic infant grinned up from the pages of medical journals next to the caption: “Really? Yes, desPLEX to prevent abortion, miscarriage and premature labor…bigger and stronger babies“.

As early as 1953, research revealed that DES did not work – that DES actually brought about higher rates of premature birth and infant mortality – yet DES continued to be prescribed to pregnant women for decades mainly because pharmaceutical companies continued to heavily promote DES use to doctors and most doctors relied on the drug companies and their sales representatives for information.

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2012 DES UK Media Coverage

Thousands of women could be at risk from silent Thalidomide

Since Sunday 22nd January 2012, there has been an unprecedented flurry of media attention on DES related health issues in the United Kingdom. This comes after two journalists – Sarah Morrison and Jaymi McCann – thoroughly investigated DES issues in the UK and published an exclusive DES report in the Independent on Sunday: “Thousands of women could be at risk from silent Thalidomide. Very quickly ripple effects started and the story spread not only throughout the country but as far as the U.S. and Australia. Many newspapers and websites caught up on the story thus increasing DES awareness locally and nationally and forcing UK health websites to update their DES information.

“Silent Thalidomide” the Secret Killer – Ten of thousands of British women in pregnancy drug scare – Exclusive Report

Independent on Sunday – Jan 22, 2012 : “Thousands of women could be at risk from silent Thalidomide”

Daily Mail – Jan 22, 2012 : ‘Silent Thalidomide’: Thousands of mothers and their daughters at risk of cancer from anti-miscarriage drugs they took decades ago

Lifestyle AOl –  Jan 22, 2012 : “Anti-miscarriage drug could cause cancer in daughters of women who took it decades ago”

Yorkshire Post – Jan 23, 2012 : “Call for compensation over pregnancy drug “

Press Association ( UKPA) – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters'”

Once the story was published by the UK Press Association it started to spread all over the country, here are a few websites where it was re-published:

London Evening Standard – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters'”

Yahoo News – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Topix, Local News Bristol – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

The Bucks Herald – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Fenland Citizen – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Crawley and Horley Observer – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Pendle Today – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Harvill Echo – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Boston Standard – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Buckingham Today – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Leigh Reporter – Jan 22, 2012: “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Halifax Courier, the Voice of Calderdale – Jan 22, 2012: “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Selby Times – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Peterborough Today – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Newmarket Journal – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Scaborough Evening News – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Hastings & St Leonards Observer – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Hemel Today – Jan 27, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Isle of Man Examiner – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Sussex Express – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

IC Newcastle – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Diss Express – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

News Post Leader – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Guardian – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Fleetwood Weekly News – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Suffolk Free Press – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Thame Gazette – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

Pocklington Post – Jan 22, 2012 : “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters”

………………………. The list continues endlessly to cover 16 Google Search Pages. Enter “Lawyer hunts for UK ‘DES daughters” in your Google Search Box for the full list. Jaymi McCann’s report in the Independent on Sunday truly created ripples, waves, or should I say rather a tsunami in the UK Press.

I am thrilled that the work my husband and I have been doing over the past year or so to raise DES awareness in the UK via our Social Media networks is paying off.  As far as I know when Jaymi McCann stumbled upon my “Journal of a DES daughter” she knew little about DES but my story and the information featured in my blog was enough to spark her interest. I can’t thank her enough for the extraordinary work she and Sarah Morrison have done to pull this excellent report together. I am grateful for the opportunity they’ve given me to share my DES story to such a large audience and for the repercussions the report will have for DES daughters and hopefully also DES sons and DES grandchildren in the UK . Now the UK government and the NHS must react, launch an national awareness campaign and ensure DES victims in the UK receive appropriate care and monitoring. Let’s keep the pressure on …

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SlideShow DES Research

About chemicals that, at certain doses, can interfere with the endocrine (or hormone) system in mammals

DES and EDCs Research

The DES Mouse at 6 Months of Age


The FlickrDES Researchphoto set features a selection of graphs, stats and the 2011 AFSSAPS DES survey report from France about the adverse effects of Diethylstilbestrol, the synthetic oestrogen prescribed to millions of pregnant women around the world decades ago in the mistaken belief that it would reduce the risk of complications during pregnancy.

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