A new analysis of a big federal study confirms the risk associated with hormone replacement therapy. It reveals the most dramatic evidence yet of the dangers of this still-popular therapy. Taking menopause hormones for five years doubles the risk for breast cancer. The study indicates that even women who took estrogen and progestin pills for as little as a couple of years had a greater chance of getting cancer. And when they stopped taking them, their odds quickly improved, returning to a normal risk level roughly two years after quitting. These new findings confirm that the risks of hormone use outweigh the benefits for most women.
Breast cancer rates fell sharply in recent years, mainly because millions of women quit hormone therapy. Another factor in the decrease was that fewer newly menopausal women started on the therapy. The study’s leader, Dr. Rowan Chlebowski of Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, observed:
It’s an excellent message for women: You can still diminish risk (by quitting), even if you’ve been on hormones for a long time. It’s not like smoking where you have to wait ten or 15 years for the risk to come down.
Study results were made available on December 13th at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. The results are from the Women’s Health Initiative, which tested estrogen and progestin pills that doctors long believed would prevent heart disease, bone loss and many other problems in women after menopause. The main part of the study was stopped in 2002 when researchers saw surprisingly higher risks of heart problems and breast cancer in hormone users. Most of the women in the federal study were in their 60s and well past menopause.
Source: Associated Press
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.