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Is hormone replacement therapy (HRT) safe?

Recent research suggests that in the first year of treatment, hormone replacement  therapy (HRT) may increase the risk of heart attacks for women who already have narrowing of the coronary arteries due to arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Studies are underway to help provide patients and physicians with definitive answers. For women with a history of heart disease, recent research suggests that long-term HRT use affords no protection against a second heart attack, and may even increase the risk slightly.

Women who have heart disease or have had a heart attack should not start HRT (even short term) without first discussing all the benefits and risks of this treatment method with her primary healthcare practitioner and possibly her cardiologist.

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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.