Advertisement

Does hormone replacement therapy (HRT) put me at risk for breast cancer?

Recently, a major national study found that women taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) -- particularly those taking combined estrogen and progestin HRT for five years or longer -- had an increased risk of developing breast cancer. Women who have been on hormone replacement for five or more years should talk to their health-care provider about the risks and benefits of treatment.

Dr. Marina Johnson
Endocrinologist

To evaluate the risk of breast cancer from HRT, women need to first understand there’s a natural occurrence of breast cancer even with NO HRT. When 10,000 women who never take HRT are followed for five years, 30 will develop breast cancer.  The more important question is how much MORE does your risk increase when you choose to take HRT?  If 10,000 women on HRT are followed for five years, 38 will develop breast cancer.  An increase of eight cases is not much when you consider that estrogen protects against heart attacks, strokes, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Continue Learning about Breast Cancer

Reducing Your Risk of Breast Cancer
Reducing Your Risk of Breast Cancer
The UN department of Disaster Risk Reduction (sounds like something out of a futuristic British sci-fi movie!) boldly states, “there is no such thing ...
Read More
Is breast cancer serious?
Devon J. Webster, MDDevon J. Webster, MD
All breast cancer needs to be treated. Some types of breast cancer are more serious than others. DCI...
More Answers
4 Habits to Keep Your Breasts Healthy
4 Habits to Keep Your Breasts Healthy4 Habits to Keep Your Breasts Healthy4 Habits to Keep Your Breasts Healthy4 Habits to Keep Your Breasts Healthy
Simple things like regular exercise can protect your breasts.
Start Slideshow
Is Hormone Therapy Effective for Breast Cancer?
Is Hormone Therapy Effective for Breast Cancer?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.