If hearing the Tom Jones songs "Carrying a Torch" and "Chills and Fever" makes you think of menopause, well "It's Not Unusual."
For years, as healthy women entered and went through menopause, they've been frightened away from hormone therapy by reports of a two-fold increase in dementia and cognitive decline for those who took estrogen or combined estrogen and progesterone. (Not to mention the overblown reports of increased risk of heart disease and breast cancer.)
It's a shame, because the studies that generated that information were looking at women 65 and older who were taking the least-favorable type of HT and were not told to take aspirin (so important, because if you are on birth-control pills or hormone therapy, aspirin reduces the risk of deep vein clots - ask your doc!). All this made many younger women (50-55) needlessly avoid HT to control hot flashes, heart palpitations, urinary incontinence and mood swings.
Now, results from the Women's Health Initiative Memory Study in Younger Women reveal HT does not damage cognitive abilities. The key is to take it at the right age (within five years of your period stopping or around 50-55), with the right Rx (we recommend micronized progesterone and bioequivalent estrogen), for the right length of time (five years tops) and with two baby aspirins a day (if your doc says it's OK).
So, if you're 50-55 and going through night sweats or worse, talk to your doc about HT. You may rediscover some of your "Funny Familiar Forgotten Feelings."
© King Features Syndicate