You've probably all heard about the Women's Health Initiative study which started in 1993. The study was designed to look at the health risks and benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy. Part of the study was actually stopped in 2002 because of the breast cancer risk associated with taking progesterine and estrogen. In fact there was a 26% increase in uterine cancer for women who still had their uterus.
Then in 2004 another portion of the study was halted because of an increase in the rate of strokes in women who had hysterectomies.
Overall the study showed that short term use of HRT caused little risk of stroke, clots, breast cancer or heart disease in a normal woman, however when you evaluate all postmenopausal women and the number of years a woman might be on HRT, the number negative side effects appeared to outweigh the positive effects of HRT.
Many women use HRT to help ease menopausal symptoms. You should consult your doctor before starting any sort of HRT therapy to evaluate your risk and to determine the most appropriate duration of your individual Hormone Replacement Therapy.
Go to in the health section of New York Times for an excellent article about the findings of the Women's Health Initiative.