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Hi Intern 234,

You are right to be concerned and cautious about using hormones, there is a lot of contradictory and ambivalent information out there. With any therapy physicians and patients must weigh the expected outcome with risks involved in pursuing that therapy.
Here are some facts that can help you decide if the benefits are worth the risks.

According to the Women's Health Initiative studies, using estrogen plus progestin therapy resulted in:
Increased risk of heart attack
Increased risk of stroke
Increased risk of blood clots
Increased risk of breast cancer
Reduced risk of colorectal cancer
Fewer fractures
No protection against mild cognitive impairment and increased risk of dementia (study included only women 65 and older)

It has also been shown that there is an increased risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women using testosterone.
A study of the long-term effects of estrogen and tesosterone therapy in 121,700 women who were part of Nurse’s health study found that in 24 years of follow-up there were 4,610 cases of Breast CA in post-menopausal women.
There was a 77% higher risk of Breast CA in those taking estrogen and testosterone compared to women who never used hormone therapy.
Women using estrogen showed a 15% increased risk
Estrogen and progestin had 58% increased risk

It is so great that you finally have an answer to what has been causing your symptoms, getting a diagnosis is the first step in healing. I have not heard of using hormone replacement for vestibulodynia and I wonder, now that you have a diagnosis, if you might try less potentially harmful therapies first. I would recommend a visit to a Naturopathic Doctor in your area. You can visit the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians to find a qualified ND in your area. www.naturopathic.org

October 30, 2009 - 1:21pm


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