Gov't says STOP to your hormone therapy
Hormone replacement therapy can do more harm than good in many cases.
A government task force is making headlines - but not for reasons you'd think. The US Preventative Services Task Force has now made a recommendation that isn't controversial. The recommendation is that women should not receive hormone replacement therapy after 50.
Research suggests that hormone replacement therapy may not be as beneficial as hoped in many cases.
Only within the last decade has hormone replacement therapy fallen out of favor with doctors who proscribed it to moderate the effects of aging in women. Doctors have found (among other things) that the therapy does reduce the odds of a fracture, but the potential harms outweigh this benefit.
Conclusive evidence has accumulated over the past decade that the cure may be worse than the condition. The draft recommendations, published online Tuesday, explain that women who use the therapy only to prevent possible future illness such as heart disease, osteoporosis, or dementia, are actually at greater risk of developing serious conditions.
Doctors have cited an increased risk of developing stroke, gallbladder disease, deep vein thrombosis and incontinence.
Doctors advise that the risk of harm with therapy is still low, but it is enough to warn doctors away from using the therapy as a preventative.
The new recommendations are uncontroversial, as doctors have strongly suspected the counterproductive nature of the therapy for some time. Over a decade ago, a test to assess the benefits of hormone replacement therapy was terminated early because it was found to be harming the patients. Subsequent studies have affirmed this hypothesis.
The US Preventive Services Task force has recently made several controversial recommendations including suggesting fewer breast cancer screenings for women and prostate-cancer screenings for men.
The current recommendation against hormone replacement therapy does not apply to women under 50 who have symptoms of menopause, especially artificially induced menopause.
© 2012, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
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Keywords: Hormone replacement therapy, estrogen, menopause, preventive
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