A recent prospective, randomized, controlled follow-up study from Slovenia was started on February 15, 2003 and terminated on February 28, 2005 . The participants answered one questionnaire before starting hormone therapy (HT) and another during follow-up visits after the 3rd, 6th, 12th, and 24th months. The study group ([i]n[/i] = 64) attended oral presentations on menopause and HT, whereas those in the control group ([i]n[/i] = 63) did not. The educational presentations aimed at helping the women to make their own informed decision about whether to start HT and then to continue HT, and about whether to change aspects of their way of life (e.g. improve their diet and/or exercise more frequently and/or use alternative therapies such as acupuncture and natural healing). At 3 months, 31% of the women in the control group had already discontinued therapy, but only 14% in the study group had done so. Fear of breast cancer was among the major reasons for stopping therapy so soon. After 24 months, 47% of the participants in the study group and 32% in the control group were still using HT. The duration of hormone use was found to correlate with the following items at 12 and 24 months: (1) never used or had only occasionally used an oral contraceptive (odds ratio (OR) 3.7, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.74–7.85; OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.30–3.91, respectively); (2) not attended the educational presentations (OR 2, 95% CI 1.14–3.53; OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.13–2.97, respectively); (3) a friend’s advice (OR 1.7, 95% CI 0.93–3.17; OR 1.8, 95% CI 1.07–3.15, respectively); (4) starting HT to relieve climacteric symptoms (OR 2.1, 95% CI 0.98–4.51; OR 2, 95% CI 1.05–3.72, respectively); (5) realizing that HT improved their quality of life (OR 0.46, 95% CI 0.21–1.05; OR 0.5, 95% CI 0.26–1.03, respectively).
Department of Medicine T, Ichilov Hospital, Tel-Aviv, Israel
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