Hormone replacement therapy safe, may be beneficial for women treated for ovarian cancer
the ONA take:
Women with epithelial ovarian cancer, the most common type, can safely take hormone replacement therapy (HRT); furthermore, HRT can have a beneficial effect on their survival, according to a 24-year, phase III international trial.
Researchers at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust led the trial, which is the largest trial to investigate HRT’s effects on ovarian cancer survival.
The trial was set up in 1990 and followed 150 women with epithelial ovarian cancer. Half of the women were allocated to receive HRT during their treatment for up to 5 years, and half did not receive HRT. Overall survival in the two groups was compared at a point in 2012, 22 years after the trial began.
In the HRT arm of the trial, 53 of the 75 women (71%) had died, compared with 68 of the 75 women (91%) who had not taken HRT.
The researchers report these results are relevant to a large proportion of women with ovarian cancer because its treatment can trigger menopause.
“We were really happy to be able to show that HRT is safe for women with the most common type of ovarian cancer. Whether or not to have HRT is a very important decision for a large proportion of women with ovarian cancer, who will often have to undergo the menopause due to the cancer treatment at the same time as coping with a cancer diagnosis,” said study clinical lead Professor Ros Eeles, professor of Oncogenetics at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and consultant at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust.
Women with epithelial ovarian cancer, the most common type, can safely take hormone replacement therapy.
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