Menopause Symptoms Can Return if Treatment Stopped
According to the latest results from the Women's Health Initiative, symptoms can return when women stop taking menopausal hormone therapy.
Akinso: Findings from a major clinical trial known as the Women's Health Initiative have shown that when women stop hormone therapy during menopause, symptoms can return. The trial was funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and was conducted in collaboration with the National Institute on Aging, the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute for Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, and the Office of Research on Women's Health. Doctor Sherry Sherman, a project official with NIA's Study of Women's Health Across the Nation says the symptoms may come back even after as much as 5 years of hormone therapy.
Sherman: "It was always unclear as to whether taking hormones for reasons other than hot flashes, what the consequences were of going off the hormones. And certainly for those on hormones for the management of menopause related symptoms. There was a good chance that the symptoms would return when the women went off hormones."
Akinso: An estimated 2 American women go through menopause each year. The Women's Health Initiative also found that women aged 50-79 should not use menopausal hormone therapy to prevent heart disease or dementia. For more information visit www.nhlbi.nih.gov. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland.