Ever since 2002, when the landmark Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study provided compelling evidence that hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is linked to breast cancer, ovarian cancer, lung cancer, and other diseases (including the number one killer of women, heart disease), HRT has come under increasing scrutiny. Now, another study based on the WHI data.
has revealed a new and even more alarming twist: Among women who took hormones, there was an increase in not only the number of breast cancer cases but also the number of deaths.
Dr. Freya Schnabel, of New York University’s Langone Medical Center, told CBS News, “I think from this point onward, any woman who’s considering taking hormone replacement therapy will need to genuinely consider these risks.”
Bear in mind that estrogen therapy had already been linked to uterine cancer even before the WHI study revealed the breast cancer link. To prevent uterine cancer, pharmaceutical companies added progesterone to the mix, but the WHI has revealed that the combination causes a host of other problems.
Because Wyeth, the maker of Premarin and Prempro (both of which are derived from pregnant mares’ urine), lobbied hard to make sure that its drugs were the only ones used in the WHI study, little is known about how other HRT drugs may affect cancer and heart disease risk. But the message is clear: Steer clear of Premarin and Prempro-for your own sake as well as the horses’.
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