Hormone Replacement Therapy

Dr. Michelle Warren discusses the latest recommendations.
3:57 | 03/01/12

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Transcript for Hormone Replacement Therapy
-- recommendations for the use of hormone therapy to treat menopause as. Suggest the risks believed to be associated with the treatment are not as high as many once thought. Joining us to discuss -- doctor Michelle Warren professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia university school Madison high doctor -- great to see you. Thank you companion -- so much controversy in the past about the use of hormone therapy to treat menopause so many women are confused but this. Recent study should reassure those women who are good candidates -- absolutely I mean what has happened is that new recommendations have come out by the North American Menopause Society. Because there's been a lot of research since that the original recommendations came out. The study was so first published in 2002. And now it's 2012 -- him a lot of things have happened since then that's fantastic news so it seems that. Breast cancer which was one of the fears of using hormones. The -- fear of that has diminished a bit -- well it hasn't in there it depends who it depends on and on several things with you have a uterus are not. How old you are and how close you are to the age of menopause. And also to some extent whether you -- -- by -- through the skin so they're all kinds of new. Understandings about how the hormones affect you very interesting now. Before we go any further talk a little bit about the symptoms of -- upon OK well many women and go through menopause without symptoms but most get symptoms. The worst being that hot flashes and night sweats insomnia. Looting this. Their committees decreases in -- -- Trouble with memory. And overall. Decreased quality of life. And the hormone therapy is meant to treat all of these -- well yes it's it's. It's approved for the treatment of hot flashes of what a lot of women don't realize though is that menopause is a symptom complex. And it's not just about hot flashes someone many could even get a key -- joint pains me. And it depends a little bit on the women so we have to listen to the whole thing and decide whether. The treatment is warranted so it sounds a little bit like there's no signs that there's no one size fits all our -- station is very key and and you have to. Decide whether hormones are appropriate for the for the patient. And whether it's gonna treat a sentence that the complaining about and the hormones are both -- -- -- -- progesterone and estrogen used boat together well if you have a uterus you have to use estrogen and progesterone -- you don't have a -- you'll use estrogen alone. And the -- -- different. As an example. Now we know that there's no increase in heart disease. If you are under sixty and within ten years of menopause that's great yeah -- -- either with estrogen and progesterone and estrogen alone. You don't have to worry about heart disease. The breast cancer is is a little more subtle in that if you take estrogen alone for seven years there was no difference in the incidence of breast cancer. And in fact. Forty years after you stop the -- -- the the estrogen. There was decreased a significant decrease in the incidence of brisket there -- yeah bottom line is make sure to talk to your doctor. And find out if hormone therapy is the right treatment -- Right now for instance if you take estrogen with protester around. The recommendation is that you can use it very safely for three to five years. And after that there's a slight increase in the incidence of breast cancer -- generation is also something duration is important. And you know you have -- individualized the therapy and decide. You according to the risk factors what's the best way to use it thank you so much doctor Michelle -- from an important information you're welcome Tanya.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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