HRT and Heart Health Coronary Heart Disease


Data suggests that the incidence of CHD is dramatically reduced by post-menopausal hormonal replacement therapy (HRT). This is especially true in women who have had hysterectomies and who, therefore, do not need to have a concomitant progestin added.

Researchers at Columbia University demonstrated that the findings of a large-scale clinical study that show low-dose hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is effective at managing cholesterol levels, offering protection from cardiovascular disease (CVD).

CVD is the leading cause of death among postmenopausal women. The data, from the Women’s Health, Osteoporosis, Progestin, and Estrogen (HOPE) Study, is published in the July 2001 edition of the medical journal Fertility and Sterility.

The study findings reveal that lower doses of HRT showed a significant (10%) increase in HDL, or good cholesterol, and an approximate 7% decrease in LDL, or bad cholesterol—similar to results seen with standard therapy.

Antioxidant therapy (like use of Coq10) when combined with traditional therapy may also be useful in preventing atherosclerosis.

By inhibiting the oxidation of LDL, chemotactic factors are not secreted thus preventing the migration of monocytes to the vessel wall and subsequent inflammatory reaction. Vitamin E and possibly C may be useful in this regard. Beta Carotene should be avoided as it has recently been shown that it does not bestow protection and actually may increase the risk of cancer in cigarette smokers.