|June 2006 · Vol. 18, No. 6
Postmenopausal HRT: What is fact, what is fiction?
What the evidence to date does and does not confirm
Women who began HRT within 5 years of menopause had less heart disease than women who started HRT more than 5 years after menopause
In the Women’s Health Initiative, the risk of VTE increased by 1.8 cases per 1,000 women using HRT
Autopsies done on women in their 40s who died from other diseases found that 39% had breast cancer—but the clinical rate was only 1%
Top 3 risk factors for breast cancer:
Undifferentiated stem cells in the breast may become dysfunctional and result in cancer
Director, CONRAD Clinical Research Center, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Eastern Virginia Medical School,
Now that the dust is settling from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), our patients are again asking reasonable questions about hormone replacement therapy (HRT). I remind them of estrogen’s proven advantages in menopause, as well as its risks. Although most women are generally aware of these risks and benefits, considerable misunderstanding persists. This article reviews what the evidence to date does and does not confirm, particularly regarding breast cancer and coronary heart disease, where most of the uncertainty remains.