Let’s remove the taboo surrounding hormone replacement

It’s time to talk about hormone therapy

group of womenContributed by: Lisa Larkin, MD, FACP, NCMP

If you’re at all familiar with me, you undoubtedly know I’m passionate about helping women understand how their bodies change during menopause. And with that comes my commitment to helping women manage menopause’s always unpleasant and sometimes debilitating symptoms. That’s why I was particularly distressed to see a new study that estimated 50,000 deaths could have been prevented if women who had hysterectomies had been prescribed estrogen hormonal therapy (HT) for treatment of their menopause symptoms. And while the details of the study have sparked a lively debate, my take-away is that this is yet another affirmation that certain populations of women can greatly benefit from receiving estrogen therapy.

Don’t be afraid to talk about hormone therapy with your doctor

Women shouldn’t have to endure hot flashes, mood changes, sleeplessness, lack of desire/painful sex, and night sweats (to name just a few symptoms of menopause) when estrogen therapy is a safe and effective treatment. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting hormonal therapy is the right option for every woman. This can only be decided on a case by case basis after carefully considering a woman’s personal health history. But the mounting evidence demands that women be informed that the benefits of estrogen therapy outweigh the risks among those ages 50-59.

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