Hormones and venous thromboembolism among postmenopausal women

Climacteric. 2014 Dec;17 Suppl 2:34-7. doi: 10.3109/13697137.2014.956717. Epub 2014 Sep 16.

Abstract

Abstract Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a common and potentially fatal disease in postmenopausal women. VTE has emerged as the most prevalent adverse effect of oral estrogens in 50-60-year-old women. Obesity and VTE history can be easily used to identify women at high risk but genetic screening is not cost-effective. Based on consistent biological and epidemiological findings, transdermal estrogen is the safest option with respect to VTE, especially in women at high risk. There is strong evidence that VTE risk is greater in women using medroxyprogesterone acetate compared with those receiving other progestins. Based on observational data, progesterone appears safe with respect to VTE. More research and action are needed to avert the hepatic first-pass effect of oral estrogens and to increase awareness of hormone-related VTE. Improving individual risk stratification and a personalized approach to hormone therapy are major challenges for future work.

Keywords: ESTROGENS; HEMOSTASIS; POSTMENOPAUSAL HORMONE THERAPY; PROGESTOGEN; VENOUS THROMBOEMBOLISM.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Cutaneous
  • Administration, Oral
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy / adverse effects*
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy / methods
  • Estrogens / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Obesity / complications
  • Postmenopause*
  • Progesterone / administration & dosage
  • Progestins / adverse effects
  • Risk Factors
  • Venous Thromboembolism / chemically induced*
  • Venous Thromboembolism / genetics

Substances

  • Estrogens
  • Progestins
  • Progesterone