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HRT Won't Lower Women's Alzheimer's Risk, Study Finds

Posted 7 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 16, 2017 – Women who use hormone therapy after menopause may not have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's, a new study suggests. However, there was some evidence that long-term use – over a decade – might be tied to a lower risk of the memory-robbing brain disease. But the results were far from definitive, the researchers added. The study is the latest to delve into the question of whether menopausal hormone therapy can benefit women's brains. Research so far has yielded conflicting findings. On one hand, a number of trials have found no brain benefits for women using hormone therapy, said Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton, executive director of the North American Menopause Society. On the other hand, small trials have found that when hormone therapy is given after surgical menopause, women can see "cognitive benefits," said Pinkerton, who was not involved in the new study. On ... Read more

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Fat Near the Heart a Hazard for Postmenopausal Women

Posted 31 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 31, 2017 – When a certain type of fat collects around the heart, it may be a sign of developing heart disease in postmenopausal women, a new study suggests. As estrogen levels fall during menopause, deposits of "paracardial" fat increase, the researchers found. This may cause more calcium build-up in the heart's arteries, an early sign of heart disease. Paracardial fat sits in pockets around the heart. These pockets lie between the heart and another type of fat that covers the heart called epicardial fat, the study authors explained. Epicardial fat provides energy to the heart, but paracardial fat has no known beneficial function, the researchers said. "We are showing for the first time that paracardial fat is associated with greater risk of calcification [calcium build-up] in postmenopausal women, more than in premenopausal women," said lead researcher Samar El Khoudary. ... Read more

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New Drug Combo Shows Promise Curbing Tough-to-Treat Breast Cancer

Posted 8 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 8, 2016 – In women with a certain form of tough-to-treat breast cancer, treatment with a combination of two drugs appeared to keep the cancer at bay longer – from about five months to 10, a new study says. The cancer is known as "advanced hormone receptor positive, HER 2 negative" breast cancer. Women with these tumors are often given drugs called aromatase inhibitors, which work by reducing estrogen in the body and slowing the growth of the cancer. However, patients commonly develop resistance to aromatase inhibitor drugs, and they stop working. This is also known as endocrine therapy resistance. The new research may offer these patients some hope, researchers said. "Our study has shown that combining a newer medicine called everolimus [Afinitor] with a more established medicine, fulvestrant [Faslodex], has demonstrated benefit in aromatase inhibitor resistant breast ... Read more

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Breast Cancer Cells May Change When They Spread to Brain: Study

Posted 7 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 7, 2016 – When breast cancer spreads to the brain, important molecular changes may occur in the cancer, a small study found. The discovery of these changes could lead to improved diagnosis and treatment, the researchers said. About 20 percent of breast cancers are a type known as HER2-positive, which typically respond to targeted therapies. However, HER2-negative breast cancer that has spread to the brain doesn't respond to the same therapies. In this study, researchers analyzed tumors from 20 patients in the United States and Ireland. They found that primary breast cancer identified as HER2-negative switched to HER2-positive when it spread to the brain. The findings show that treatments should target not only the original breast cancer, but also brain tumors, said study author Adrian Lee, director of the Institute for Precision Medicine, part of the University of ... Read more

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Hormone Therapy Won't Help Memory After Menopause

Posted 19 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 19, 2016 – Women who take estrogen after menopause may believe it helps them maintain their memory and thinking skills, but a new study suggests they are mistaken. Researchers found no change in mental ability associated with estrogen therapy among women who used it after menopause, no matter when they started taking it. "There is no important benefit, there is no important risk cognitively associated with the use of hormone therapy over at least five years," said lead researcher Dr. Victor Henderson. He is a professor of health research and policy, and neurology and neurological science at Stanford University School of Medicine, in Palo Alto, Calif. "If a postmenopausal woman is considering taking hormone therapy with the thought that it might improve memory or other aspects of cognition, she should know that there is no evidence that it does benefit cognition," he said. ... Read more

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