Researchers highlighted the risks associated with the use of certain hormonal drugs: they are more likely to develop breast cancer. The study dates back to 2002 when a study showed that taking a combination hormone pill that has both estrogen and progesterone functions to treat menopausal symptoms could have tragic consequences.
Certain exogenous hormones
(in the form of drugs, patches, creams or injections, rather than hormones produced by the body itself) are thought to be associated with an increased risk of heart disease and cancer, although more is known and many more problems. Numerous studies over the past decades have found that taking estrogen and progesterone may increase the risk of breast cancer.
This study prompted many doctors to recommend not taking exogenous hormones to relieve menopausal symptoms or recover due to hormone levels. Still, many people are unaware of the study and may seek hormone therapy to put themselves at risk for more serious illnesses.
A major federal study conducted in 2002 (discussed recently at the aforementioned symposium) highlighted another concern: the increased risk of breast cancer could last for decades. The study involved approximately 16,000 older women who took a placebo or a combination of estrogen and progestin hormone drugs.
The study ended in 2002
due to the severity of breast cancer and heart disease in women taking hormones. The women stopped taking the pill, but researchers continued to monitor their health for the next decade or so.
Based on the number of breast cancer cases among study participants that year,
researchers found that women taking hormone drugs were 29% more likely to develop cancer. On the other hand, studies have found that women who take only estrogen have a 23% lower chance of developing breast cancer in the same amount of time.