HRT & Cancer confirmation

April 13, 2009


HRT is a thorny subject, with its advocates and detractors in equal numbers. I have been on HRT for 6 months many years ago, and know what it can do, but I also have seen much research on the damage it can wreak. New studies in recent months had pointedout the dangers of side effects such as strokes, blood clots, brain shrinkage, dementia, and even gallbladder disease, but the greatest danger comes from its role in promoting cancer.

The New England Journal of Medicine recently reported that when women are taken off HRT their cancer risk is dramatically reduced. A new study was conducted by UCLA oncologist Dr. Roman Chelbowski, and he found that the rate of breast cancer in postmenopausal women dramatically dropped in the first two years after they stopped using HRT, and then continued to reduce each year afterwards. Women in the study who also took hormone supplements of oestrogen and progestin had double the chance of developing cancer over five years, compared to women who weren’t on any form of HRT.

My view is that if you take HRT knowing the risks that is your business, but I do urge you not to fall into the trap of taking HRT long-term, which is what many doctors advocate. The risks increase, and the benefits decrease, the longer you are on it so make sure you have a definite schedule. Menopausal symptoms may be alleviated, but the menopause itself can’t be avoided, HRT or not.


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