At last week’s North American Menopause Society annual meeting, new study results were presented regarding hormone therapy and the incidence of diabetes. The study is based on analysis of the data from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI). The particular combination of estrogen and progestin therapy decreases seven of the nine metabolites (substances produced during metabolism) that are “strongly associated” with Type 2 diabetes.
This is good information for women and their health care providers to have because it fleshes out another part of the balance of risks and benefits for each woman, especially, as the NAMS medical director, Dr. Stephanie Faubion says, “given the debilitating effects of diabetes and its increased incidence in the United States.” The study was led by Dr. Heather Hirsch at the Ohio State University Medical Center.
I’m grateful for this continuing research, and encourage women to investigate what’s currently known about hormone therapy. The more we know, the better decisions we can make about how hormone therapy might help us maintain our health. And it’s worth remembering, as Dr. Avrum Bluming said in our Fullness of Midlife interview, “Everything in life that we do is a balance of risk vs. benefit.”
Dr. Barb DePree, M.D., has been a gynecologist and women’s health provider for almost 30 years and a menopause care specialist for the past ten.