Breast Cancer Rates Drop, First Time in Decades

San Antonio (AP) -- When a huge study warned that hormone pills lead to a higher risk of breast cancer, millions of women stopped taking them.

And today, there's a sign they might have made the right decision.

Experts say a year after that report, America's breast cancer rates dropped more than seven percent.

They're pointing to a new analysis of federal cancer statistics for 2003. The findings are being presented at a breast cancer conference in Texas.

Hormone replacement drugs were commonly prescribed to treat symptoms of menopause. But drug company Wyatt, which made two of those drugs, faces more than 4,000 lawsuits over them.

The firm won the first one in September. A mistrial was declared a month later in another case, while another woman settled out of court.

Copyright 2006 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.