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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Ovarian Cancer and HRT?

Ovarian Cancer Found Near the Left Fallopian Tube
New Studies link ovarian cancer and hormone therapy published in the Lancet by the Collaborative Group on Epidemiological Studies of Ovarian Cancer. Although we know that progesterone is protective against uterine cancer, and estrogen alone may be protective against breast cancer, hormone therapy in menopause has never conclusively been linked to ovarian cancer until this study. In the study over 21,000 women were studied and the risk of ovarian cancer was an increased rate of of only one extra cancer per 1000 women (or less). It is still just an epidemiological study and more facts may come out with other types of studies. If you are taking hormone therapy, or considering hormone therapy we have a few bits of gyno advice:  First you need to establish your baseline risk of ovarian cancer with your gyno. Next you should monitor your risks. After that weigh your risks and benefits of any therapies with how they might impact on your overall risk of ovarian cancer, finally you should have any subtle symptoms monitored for actual ovarian cancer. In this case it meant having a laparoscopy that was able to establish the early diagnosis of ovarian cancer in a patient with vague abdominal discomfort. There are many ways to study your risk factors, including genetic testing , but we do not generally do extra ovarian cancer testing in women who have used menopausal hormone therapy.

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