Harvard’s Women’s Health Initiative reported in 2002 that hormone replacement therapy increased the risk of coronary artery disease and cancer. In the ensuing six years, the use of synthetic hormones in middle-aged and older women decreased from 85% to 18%, and the incidence of hip fractures increased sharply by 55%, as reported from a study of 80,995 women in the Kaiser Permanente group in California. In my reading of the data, the culprits for increased coronary and cancer risks were primarily progestins and secondarily Premarin, both synthetic drugs. Natural progesterone and estrogen from soy and yams were not implicated in the WHI study. It is important to check with your doctor on such matters, but we often use bio-identical hormones to relieve menopausal symptoms and prevent osteoporosis for limited periods of time when indicated.
See Family Practice News(click here), November 15, 2010, p. 42.