Can menopausal hor­mone ther­apy (MHT) help treat my symp­toms?

Wellness Update - - Let's Talk Menopause -

MHT, which used to be called hor­mone re­place­ment ther­apy (HRT), in­volves tak­ing the hor­mones es­tro­gen and pro­ges­terone. (Women who don’t have a uterus any­more take just es­tro­gen). MHT can be very good at re­liev­ing mod­er­ate to se­vere menopausal symp­toms and pre­vent­ing bone loss. But MHT also has some risks, es­pe­cially if used for a long time.

MHT can help with menopause by:

• Re­duc­ing hot flashes and night sweats, and re­lated

prob­lems such as poor sleep and ir­ri­tabil­ity • Treat­ing vagi­nal symp­toms, such as dry­ness and dis­com­fort, and re­lated prob­lems, such as pain dur­ing sex • Slow­ing bone loss • Pos­si­bly eas­ing mood swings and mild de­pres­sive mood

For some women, MHT may in­crease their chance of:

• Blood clots • Heart at­tack • Stroke • Breast can­cer • Gall blad­der dis­ease Re­search into the risks and ben­e­fits of MHT con­tin­ues. For ex­am­ple, a re­cent study sug­gests that the low-dose patch form of MHT may not have the pos­si­ble risk of stroke that other forms can have. Talk with your doc­tor about the pos­i­tives and neg­a­tives of MHT based on your med­i­cal his­tory and age. Keep in mind, too, that you may have symp­toms when you stop MHT. You can also

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