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No HRT because of cancer? No HRT because of cancer?

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Unread 05-11-2011, 09:36 PM
No HRT because of cancer?

I am curious - since my hyster I have not been put on anything. I dont know if that s because I had cancer or what? Do most of us need to get some kind of hormone replacemnt? Should I be pushing this with my Dr?
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Unread 05-11-2011, 10:39 PM
No HRT because of cancer?

Monkeyhead, using HRT is really a personal choice, one that you should discuss with your doctor. If you're in surgical menopause, the side effects can interfere with sleep, life, etc... some drs do not automatically put us on HRT, they wait to see if you can handle the symptoms. Many of us do the research and discover the benefits of estrogen replacement and then ask the drs to prescribe something. I think if you've had cancer, if it was an estrogen fed cancer, your dr may not choose HRT but it'd definitely something your dr should be discussing with you.

Keep in mind that those women in natural menopause (still have ovaries, no hysterectomy) still make up to 40% of the amount of hormones they made pre-menopause. Without ovaries, our output of hormones is near nil. So that's why most of us use HRT. If you want to read a good book about how estrogen is used for almost every part of your body, check out one of Dr Vliet's books. It's amazing really, how there are estrogen and progesterone (and testosterone) receptors all over your body, and they need the hormones to function to their full potential.

Research as much as you can about the options, the side effects, the benefits, etc and then talk to your dr about it.
Unread 05-11-2011, 11:00 PM
No HRT because of cancer?

Thank you Calypso-you're right they said it was an estrogen fed cancer. So far i have been handling the sweats and things- I'm concerned about the bone loss though...I guess I should make that the topic of our next meeting. Thanks again
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Unread 05-18-2011, 07:26 PM
Re: No HRT because of cancer?

Hi Monkeyhead,

It depends on the kind of cancer that you had and the drs that you have. I had cancer and I am still on HRT, based on my age, the cancer I had, and my risk tolerance :-) It is a personal decision after all and I have decided that the risk is (at least presently) worth it vs. dealing with all the lovely stuff that may accompany surgical menopause (brain fog, sweats, bone loss, possible increased cardiac risks, mood swings, etc). In my experience there is a considerable stigma associated with HRT and cancer-I was flat out told by some drs initially that 'you will never get any' HRT but others have a more nuanced approach. If this is something that you want to explore, do not hesitate to raise it with your doctor and try to get a feeling whether s/he is neutral or biased on the subject. Please also note that not all surgeons, even cancer ones, are well versed on the subject of HRT-after all, gyo-oncs are focused on killing the cancer, less so on the aftermath. I only really achieved balance (which is largely a work in progress) after seeing a menopause specialist, who really "got" what I was going through rather than just dismissing my issues and telling me to live with them. HRT is, as I have discovered, a very hot topic, which is why this site is so refreshing. Good luck and don't hesitate to ask us more questions if you have them.

Unread 05-18-2011, 08:26 PM
Re: No HRT because of cancer?

HI Avatar - Thank you so much for your info. I will definatley look into this-even if I can just find out if it will get rid of some of these yukky feelings-I am handling the sweats-they're not coming as often, but brain fog and low libido - that's been around since I started menopause 2 years ago.

Thanks again!!
Unread 05-20-2011, 11:58 PM
Re: No HRT because of cancer?

Hi Monkeyhead,

My pleasure! If you are experiencing brain fog and low libido, you should also probably ask your dr about testosterone (which I mainly learned about from the ladies on this site). Early on in the process, after initially pushing the issue, my gyno-surgeon (bless her heart) just handed me a prescription for Estradot (Vivelle), lowest dose of course-it took some convincing to get her to raise it and she never mentioned testosterone, which is considered a bit 'way out' since we are all using it 'off label' up here in Canada (although I am told it is commonly prescribed to menopausal women in the UK and my health plan does cover it, thank g-d). I have been personally finding it very useful for a variety of things-it seems to add back some of my personal "oompf", "moxie", "drive" (whatever you want to call it). Again, you may have to see a specialist for this discussion. And the drug's detailed instructions/warning label (entirely directed to men) is a hoot and worth the price of the drug alone :-)

Best of luck with this!

Unread 05-21-2011, 11:12 AM
Re: No HRT because of cancer?

Thanks Avatar - that was hilarious...can't wait to see what their warning/instruction label looks like...Take Care my friend...I'll let you know what my DR says when I see him this week.
Unread 05-22-2011, 11:01 AM
Re: No HRT because of cancer?

Please do, Monkeyhead..and I will post the results of my 1-year checkup with my gyno-onc on desperately trying not to think about it this weekend:-)


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