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Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) refers to the administration of exogenous (outside the body) estrogen (and sometimes progestin) to women who have experienced physiologic depletion of their natural estrogen because of menopause. Menopause, which is the permanent cessation of menstruation after loss of ovarian follicular function, is clinically defined as the absence of menses for 12 months. Natural menopause occurs at an average of 51 years. Approximately 1% of women become postmenopausal before 40 years of age, and 5% become postmenopausal after 55 years of age. During the several years before menopause, a period known as menopause transition, levels of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) increase and ovarian follicles abnormally mature; as a result, estrogen and progesterone levels become erratic.

The two basic reasons to take HRT are the management of the symptoms of menopause and the prevention of certain diseases (such as heart disease and osteoporosis) which are common among postmenopausal women. A common concern regarding HRT is the increased risk of some kinds of cancer which has been associated with taking estrogen.

Not all women are candidates for HRT and the decision must be based on a thorough consideration of the risks and potential benefits for each individual.

Medifocus: Trusted Medical Information...When You Really Need to Know

The Medifocus Guide on Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) provides answers to the following important questions and medical issues:

What Your Doctor Reads:

This MediFocus Guide contains an extensive listing of citations and abstracts of recent journal articles that have been published about this condition in trustworthy medical journals. This is the same type of information that is available to physicians and other health care professionals. A partial selection of journal articles that are abstracted in this MediFocus Guide includes: understands that consumers who are facing serious medical issues need access to credible, up-to-date medical information to help them make informed health-care decisions. That's why we've developed the MediFocus Guides...the most advanced and trustworthy patient research guides for over 200 chronic and life-threatening conditions. Each MediFocus Guide includes a detailed overview of the condition including information about diagnosis, treatment options, cutting-edge research, and new developments; excerpts of important journal articles from the current medical literature focusing on standard treatments and treatment options; a directory of leading authors and medical institutions who specialize in the treatment of the condition; and a listing of organizations and support groups where you can obtain additional information about the illness.

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