For post-menopausal women, vaginal estrogens do not raise risk of cancer, other diseases

August 16, 2017, University of California, Los Angeles
The researchers examined data from participants in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study. Credit: Women's Health Initiative

Women who have gone through menopause and who have been using a vaginal form of estrogen therapy do not have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer than women who have not been using any type of estrogen.

Among with an intact uterus, the risks of stroke, , colorectal cancer, endometrial cancer and pulmonary embolism/deep vein thrombosis were not significantly different between vaginal estrogen users and nonusers. The risks of coronary heart disease, fracture and premature death were lower in users than non-users. The risks of , stroke, cancer and pulmonary embolism/deep vein thrombosis for women who had undergone hysterectomies were not significantly different in users of vaginal estrogen compared to nonusers.

Randomized trials and other studies have shown that women who take in the form of a pill may have an increased risk of blood clots, stroke and if the estrogen is used together with progestogen pills, invasive breast cancer. Some women take a vaginal form of estrogen, and it has not been known whether that treatment carries risks similar to the tablet form.

The researchers examined data from participants in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study who were recruited at 40 U.S. clinical centers and were ages 50 to 79 when they began the study.

This study, the first to examine potential adverse health effects in users of vaginal estrogen compared with non-users, suggests that vaginal therapy is a safe treatment for genitourinary symptoms such as burning, discomfort, and pain during intercourse associated with menopause.

The study was published in the peer-reviewed journal Menopause.

Explore further: The role of dosage in assessing risk of hormone therapy for menopause

Related Stories

The role of dosage in assessing risk of hormone therapy for menopause

July 27, 2017
When it comes to assessing the risk of estrogen therapy for menopause, how the therapy is delivered—taking a pill versus wearing a patch on one's skin—doesn't affect risk or benefit, researchers at UCLA and elsewhere ...

Blood clot risk lower for estrogen-only, transdermal, and vaginal estrogen at menopause

March 30, 2016
A Swedish population study is helping answer lingering questions about hormone therapy safety. Published online today in Menopause, the journal of The North American Menopause Society, the study shows that estrogen-only therapy ...

NAMS 2017 position statement updates guidelines for hormone therapy use

June 20, 2017
A new position statement on the use of hormone therapy (HT) for menopausal and postmenopausal women from The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) has been published online today in the Society's journal, Menopause. "The ...

All vaginal estrogens effective for genitourinary sx of menopause

November 12, 2014
(HealthDay)—All vaginal estrogens are effective for women with genitourinary syndrome of menopause, according to a review published online Nov. 5 in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Estrogen helps keep joint pain at bay after hysterectomy

March 20, 2013
Estrogen therapy can help keep joint pain at bay after menopause for women who have had a hysterectomy. Joint pain was modestly, but significantly, lower in women who took estrogen alone than in women who took placebo in ...

Vaginal estriol gel helps women recover after surgery for pelvic organ prolapse

March 29, 2017
Pelvic organ prolapse is estimated to affect up to one-half of all women, causing pain and interfering with sexual function. A new study demonstrates how an ultralow dose of vaginal estriol gel used before and after pelvic ...

Recommended for you

Blood signature could improve early tuberculosis diagnosis

June 19, 2018
A gene signature in the bloodstream could reveal whether someone is going to develop active tuberculosis (TB) disease months before symptoms begin. Such a signature has now been developed by a team led by the Francis Crick ...

Scientists uncover a factor important for Zika virus host species restriction

June 19, 2018
Princeton University researchers Qiang Ding, Alexander Ploss, and colleagues have identified one of the mechanisms by which Zika virus (ZIKV) circumvents immune control to replicate in human cells. The paper detailing this ...

Toothpaste and hand wash may contribute to antibiotic resistance

June 19, 2018
A common ingredient in toothpaste and hand wash could be contributing to antibiotic resistance, according to University of Queensland research.

Combining different malaria vaccines could reduce cases by 91 percent

June 19, 2018
Using two experimental anti-malarial vaccines, which work in different ways, can greatly reduce the number of malaria infections in animal studies.

Children's immune system could hold the key to preventing sepsis

June 19, 2018
Children's immune systems could hold the key to preventing life-threatening infections and sepsis, a new study has revealed.

Beware of getting a tattoo if your immune system isn't up to scratch, doctors warn

June 18, 2018
Getting a tattoo may have some unexpected complications if your immune system isn't up to scratch, warn doctors in the journal BMJ Case Reports.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.