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What Are the Risks of Taking Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Looking for information on hormone replacement therapy so you can better understand any risks associated with choosing this therapy option? Good for you for taking the time to find out more about HRT, as the decision to take hormones when you are going through menopause is an important one. While there are indeed many benefits that come with choosing hormone therapy, there are also many risks. This means you need to weigh all your options so you can come up with a decision that is going to work for your particular situation.
While this information is not intended to frighten you, it's simply intended to provide all the information so you can make an informed decision regarding your health. Overall, HRT is a safe and effective solution for women who need this treatment. Your medical provider can provide customized insight into what you should consider given your personal circumstances.
Hormone replacement benefits
There are many benefits that come with choosing HRT. According to Menopause.org, hundreds of clinical studies have provided evidence that HRT effectively helps such conditions as hot flashes, vaginal dryness, night sweats and bone loss. It is an effective solution for curbing many of the unwanted symptoms that women face as they go through the natural progression of menopause.
Who should not take HRT
The following list includes reasons someone should not take HRT: They think they are pregnant, have blood clots, have liver disease, or have had a stroke or heart attack. The treatment is intended for individuals who need higher levels of estrogen. Speak to your doctor to learn if you are a good candidate for hormone replacement therapy.
Five risks of taking hormone replacement therapy
The following is a list of common risks that come with choosing to use HRT when going through menopause. In order for someone to reduce their risk, they need to let their primary care doctor know what their symptoms are so the right product and delivery method can be prescribed. Those who are going through menopause and choosing to take HRT will also benefit from making healthier lifestyle choices, e.g., stop smoking, make better food choices, maintain a healthy weight, etc.
Risk #1 — increased chance of being diagnosed with blood clots
By taking hormone replacements, your liver increases its production of blood-clotting factors. Estrogen affects blood clotting by increasing plasma and coagulating activity which puts you at risk for blood clots.
Risk #2 — increased chance of stroke
Hormonal replacement therapy can cause a risk of stroke in women of any age. Post-menopausal women who are overall healthy increase their chance of having a stroke by about a third. It is important to be monitored by your physician while taking hormonal replacement therapy of any kind.
Risk #3 — increased chance of heart attack
Overall if you are on hormonal replacement therapy, you are at low risk for developing a heart issue. The risk also depends on several factors such as your age, family history, family factors along with your lifestyle habits.
The benefits typically outweigh the risks if you are in good health and are not experiencing any issues.
Risk #4 — increased chance of breast cancer
Hormone replacement therapy is not linked directly to breast cancer; however, taking this HRT does slightly increase the chance of developing some breast and ovarian cancers. Your doctor will closely monitor you if he feels you should be on hormone replacements.
Risk #5 — increased chance of gallbladder disease
Taking hormone replacement therapy is a known risk factor in developing gallbladder disease. Estrogen therapy promotes gallstone formation and cholecystitis. The combination of these factors can develop into more serious health issues in the future. Talk to your doctor before starting any hormone replacement therapy.
Have any questions for us?
It's important that you have a clear understanding of HRT and how it may be beneficial for your health needs. However, it is likely that you still have questions bout this treatment. Do you have any questions about hormone replacement therapy? If you do, please do not hesitate to contact us at your earliest convenience. It is necessary for you to understand both the benefits and risks associated with taking hormones when you are going through menopause. When you do, you can make a choice that will meet your particular needs during this time in your life. We are here for you if you need us!
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