Hormone Therapy and Surgical Primary Ovarian Insufficiency

From the December 2016 issue of Fertility and Sterility

Hormone replacement therapy in young women with surgical primary ovarian insufficiency

Philip M. Sarrel, M.D., Shannon D. Sullivan, M.D., Ph.D., and Lawrence M. Nelson, M.D.


“Women in the Nurses Health Study who had experienced surgical primary ovarian insufficiency before age 50 years and never used Estrogen Therapy showed an 85% increased risk for stroke and a 98% increased risk of coronary heart disease compared with women who did use Estrogen Therapy.”

“Regrettably, it has been estimated between 2002 and 2011 failure to take Estrogen Therapy has caused almost 50,000 women with surgical primary ovarian insufficiency to die prematurely (before age 70 years).”

“Among the sisters who used Estrogen Therapy, there was a 42% lower risk for developing young-onset breast cancer.”

“For premenopausal women who have had a hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy, the benefits of Estrogen Therapy far outweigh risks and treatment can be life-preserving, and in some cases life-saving.”

“In fact, Estrogen Therapy does not increase breast cancer risk in premenopausal women including women who carry the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 gene mutations.”

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