Can Hormone Replacement Therapy Prevent Heart Disease?
Results from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study revealed that the overall rate of heart disease events in postmenopausal women with established heart disease on estrogen-progestin or estrogen alone was not reduced. The results showed that the therapy actually increased the risk of heart disease in the women on combination therapy. Another study, published in the January/February 2006 issue of The Journal of Women’s Health showed that the risk of heart disease demonstrated in the WHI may be related more to the advanced age of the participants as opposed to the HRT itself. The study also found that HRT given to younger women, at the onset of menopause, appeared to decrease the risk of heart disease. Finally, a study published in the March 5, 2008 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association reported on WHI participants three years after they stopped combination HRT. The researchers found that “many of the health effects of hormones such as increased risk of heart disea