Welcome! We regret to inform you that the Injury Board National News Desk has been discontinued. Feel free to browse around and enjoy our previously published articles, or visit The Injury Blog Network for the latest in personal injury news.

HRT Does Not Raise Heart Attack Risk In Women

Posted by Chrissie Cole
Thursday, October 02, 2008 1:33 PM EST
Category: Major Medical
Tags: FDA & Prescription Drugs, Women's Health, Hormones, HRT, Menopause, Breast Cancer, Estrogen, Progestin


IMAGE SOURCE: © Wikimedia Commons / Venus / author: Kyle

Women taking hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, to treat menopause symptoms are not at an increased risk of heart attack, especially if using cream, skin patch or taking “cyclic” hormone combinations, reports Danish researchers.

The study, published in the European Heart Journal, suggests hormone replacement therapy does not raise the risk of heart attack in women, but rather how and when it is administered.

“This observational study is the biggest of its kind, to assess the influence of various types of therapies, doses and routes of administration,” Dr. Ellen Lokkegaard of the Rigshospitalet in Cophenhagen, lead author of the study.

The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), sponsored by the U.S. government was designed to examine health issues in postmenopausal women. In 2002, it was discontinued after researchers found that HRT increased the risk of adverse events including blood clots, heart attack and breast cancer.

The risk was based on whether the woman was taking estrogen independently or with progesterone, another female hormone.

For this study, researchers looked at 698,000 women between the ages of 51 to 69 in Denmark, for six years.

There was no greater risk of heart attack in women using HRT, compared to women never having used hormone therapy. There was, however, a 24 percent raised risk in women between the ages of 51 to 54 and a heightened risk in younger women taking the prescribed medication for a longer duration of time.

Women taking continuous HRT – estrogen and progesterone together everyday – had 35 percent greater risk of heart attack compared to those women who had never used HRT.

However, HRT taken on a cyclical basis – estrogen pills taken for 25 days, then adding progestin during the second part of the month and no pills for three to five days – showed a lower risk of heart attack.

Gels and patches lowered the risk of heart attack by 38 to 44 percent.

Researchers found, the type and dosage of estrogen and progesterone did not matter. Currently, women are advised to take the lowest dosage of HRT for the shortest time possible.

“Our study does not change current indications and recommendations for HRT,” wrote Lokkegaard.

“While the data is interesting, it is in no way definitive," said Dr. Lori Mosca, director of preventive cardiology at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. #

No Comments

Comments for this article are closed.

About the National News Desk

Our mission is to seek the complete truth and provide a full and fair account of the events and issues that surround personal safety, accident prevention, and injury recovery.  We are committed to serving the public with honesty and integrity in these efforts.

Hurt in an accident? Contact an Injury Board member

Subscribe to Blog Updates

Enter your email address if you would like to receive email notifications when comments are made on this post.

Email address


RSS Feed

Add the National News Desk to your favorite RSS reader

Add to Google Reader Add to myYahoo Add to myMSN Add to Bloglines Add to Newsgator Add to Netvibes Add to Pageflakes