Hormone Replacement Therapy involves the synthetic replacement of either estrogen, for those women who have had hysterectomy, or estrogen + progesterone for those women who retain their uterus. Progesterone helps protect the uterus from development of endometrial cancer related to unopposed estrogen use. Some 20 million American women take some form of synthetic prescription HRT in pills, patches, or creams to combat their menopausal symptoms.
What is the recommended dosage and duration?
Patients should consult their physician and develop a treatment plan. Generally speaking, HRT should be administered in the lowest dose possible to achieve symptom relief. HRT should not be considered a lifetime commitment, but rather a temporary measure to help patients pass through menopause. Ideally women should be managed on synthetic HRT for a period of less than 5 years to avoid risks related to breast cancer, blood clot, and stroke.