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Step 4: Read and complete the decision guide to learn more about your symptoms.

Hot Flashes

Here are some risks and benefits that you and your doctor will need to consider together if you are interested in using estrogen and progesterone to treat your hot flashes. Most women who use hormone replacement for hot flashes use the medicine for five years or less, which is considered short-term treatment. In your case, the risks that are listed include risks for women who take both estrogen and progesterone.

Risks from estrogen with progesterone:

- You are more likely to get breast cancer; for a 50-year-old woman taking these hormones, there is about a one in 100 chance that she will develop breast cancer that would not have developed without hormone treatment

- You are more likely to have a stroke

- You are more likely to get a blood clot in your leg or your lungs (pulmonary embolus)

- You are more likely to develop dementia

- You are more likely to get gallstones

There are some benefits from estrogen with progesterone, such as:

- Relief from hot flashes

- A lower risk for urinary tract infections

- Slightly lower colon cancer risk

- Increase in bone density and decreased risk of bone fractures (however, other non-hormonal treatments are available to improve your bone density)

- Less vaginal dryness

Studies have also revealed that short-term treatment does not appear to worsen -- nor to improve -- heart attack risk when it is used in women under the age of 60. However, for older women, estrogen with progesterone does increase heart attack risk.

Most experts would advise that short-term estrogen and progesterone treatment is reasonable for people who are very bothered by hot flashes. Hormone treatment should, in general, be used for five years or less near to the time of menopause, due to an increased risk for serious side effects in older women.

Visit with your doctor if you would like to consider treatment with estrogen and progesterone for your hot flashes.

Click here to review other treatments for hot flashes.

Disclaimer: This content should not be considered complete and should not be used in place of a call or visit to a health professional. Use of this content is subject to specific Terms of Use & Medical Disclaimers.

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