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Women S Health Initiative

October 13, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Sexual desire disorder in women is supposedly a significant problem in the United States, according to some studies and various companies that market products designed to improve women's sex lives. But a large study published this week finds that older women are mostly quite satisfied with their sexual health. If they have a problem, it's because they lack a partner or would like to have more sex, not less. The data are from the Women's Health Initiative, famous for its investigation into the effects of hormone therapy on post-menopausal women.
April 14, 2004 | Rosie Mestel, Times Staff Writer
Six weeks after a large clinical trial on estrogen therapy was abruptly terminated, scientists have published the first details of the study -- revealing that, on average, the hormone caused 12 more strokes and six additional venous blood clots per 10,000 women each year. Researchers for the Women's Health Initiative also reported in today's Journal of the American Medical Assn.
September 11, 1996 | SHARI ROAN
Two years ago, the federal government launched the largest study ever of major issues pertaining to women's health. The Women's Health Initiative was designed to boost knowledge about women after a major government report revealed that many previous studies focused primarily on men. But, with a deadline set for the year 2005, investigators are concerned that too few women will join the study, thus jeopardizing researchers' ability to obtain clear-cut answers to some important questions.
Recruitment for the Women's Health Initiative, the largest study ever on issues pertaining to women's health, will close on time at the end of the month, according to government health officials. The study, which began recruiting women in 1994, has enrolled more than 130,000 post-menopausal women nationwide and will meet its recruitment goals, says Dr. Jacques Rossouw, project officer for the National Institutes of Health.
Three years ahead of schedule, scientists have unexpectedly halted a critical clinical trial testing the effects of hormone replacement therapy on women after menopause because of a slight but significant increase in the risk of breast cancer, heart attacks, blood clots and strokes. The trial, which tracked 16,608 women taking either the hormones estrogen and progestin or a placebo for five years, was brought to an end after a review in late May made it clear that the risks of the hormone regimen outweighed the benefits.
October 19, 2010
Estrogen-plus-progestin hormone replacement therapy increases the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Now a longer-term study of the problem shows the higher risk of breast cancer continues among women who took hormones but stopped, that the cancer in these women may be more advanced and that the likelihood of dying of breast cancer is increased. The link between hormone therapy and breast cancer was confirmed with the conclusion of the Women's Health Initiative study in 2005, based on about 5 1/2 years of data.
August 5, 2010
Far fewer women take hormone replacement therapy than did a decade ago, but the drugs are a mixed bag of risks and benefits, as studies occasionally point out. For women who are especially concerned about colon cancer, hormone therapy might be a good idea. A study has found that using hormone replacement therapy for any length of time cut the risk of distal colon cancer in half. The distal part of the colon is closest to the rectum. The longer women took hormone therapy, the greater the reduced risk.
December 9, 2010 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times
Estrogen-only hormone replacement therapy may benefit younger postmenopausal women who do not have a uterus, a Canadian researcher said Thursday at the annual meeting of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. Dr. Joseph Ragaz, an oncologist at the University of British Columbia, presented a re-analysis of the Women's Health Initiative -- which originally concluded that both long-term estrogen-only and estrogen-plus-progestin hormone replacement were too risky for most women.
November 4, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
A significant rise in hip fractures among women is one result of the decade-long slide in the popularity of hormone replacement therapy, researchers report in a new study. The landmark Women's Health Initiative study showed unequivocally that hormone therapy helps strengthen women's bones and prevents fractures of hip, wrist and spine by 27% to 35%. However, hormone use fell out of favor after studies in 2002 showed it raised the risk of breast cancer and did not lower heart-disease risk and, in fact, may elevate the risk in some women.
July 18, 2013 | By Eryn Brown, This post has been updated. See below for details.
Hormone replacement therapy has plummeted among U.S. women since the Women's Health Initiative cut short its Estrogen Plus Progestin Trial in 2002, when study results revealed that women who took the two-hormone therapy suffered adverse effects and higher mortality. But the widespread rejection since of all hormone replacement therapies among menopausal women has been misguided, a team of researchers from the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., wrote Thursday in the online edition of the American Journal of Public Health .  Looking at a separate group of women than those followed in the 2002 trial - women ages 50 to 59 who had had hysterectomies - Dr. Philip Sarrel and colleagues calculated that rejecting estrogen-only hormone therapy resulted in the early deaths of nearly 50,000 women between 2002 and 2011.
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