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Review
, 15 (8), 898-908

Estrogen and Androgen Hormone Therapy and Well-Being in Surgically Postmenopausal Women

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Review

Estrogen and Androgen Hormone Therapy and Well-Being in Surgically Postmenopausal Women

Krista Kotz et al. J Womens Health (Larchmt).

Abstract

Background: Women undergoing surgical menopause experience an abrupt drop in gonadal hormones and are more likely to have symptoms that negatively impact well-being, including hot flashes, sexual dysfunction, psychological problems, and testosterone deficiency. The purpose of this review was to examine the effects of hormone therapies on well-being among surgically menopausal women.

Methods: Studies were retrieved using both Cochrane and PubMed searches. A systematic literature review was performed to identify double-blind randomized controlled trials of the effects of menopausal hormone therapies on quality of life and well-being among women who have undergone hysterectomy with bilateral oophorectomy. Two studies meeting these criteria were included for review.

Results: For each study reviewed, the following aspects were examined: type of hormonal therapies used, inclusion/exclusion criteria, overall changes, and changes in specific parameters of well-being. General well-being improved from baseline with certain types and doses of estrogen or estrogen plus testosterone therapy, with no serious adverse events.

Conclusions: Estrogen with or without testosterone may improve general well-being in some groups of surgically menopausal women. Levels of serum estrogen achieved in these studies were within a normal range for premenopausal women. Adding testosterone to estrogen therapy may provide additional improvements in well-being in some women, but only at supraphysiological levels of total testosterone and physiological levels of free testosterone. It is recommended that the clinician discuss the potential benefits and risks with each woman and devise an individualized plan based on shared decision making.

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