More women at risk for breast cancer are undergoing risk reducing ovarian removal to prevent ovarian cancer.
Women with ovarian removal prior to menopause, or early in menopause, are more likely to have severe symptoms such as hot flashes, weight gain, lack of sex drive, as well as other symptoms such as poor skin health.
Hormone therapy can treat these symptoms of menopause and improve bone health, protect against heart disease, and prevent urinary symptoms.
In young women (under 45) who have had ovarian removal for reducing cancer risk, the data now suggests they can take hormone therapy, and have the same risks as women who do not carry genetic risk for breast cancer.
Estrogen alone, testosterone alone, are safer than the use of combination therapy that includes progesterone.
If you yourself had breast cancer and want to take hormone therapy for prevention of menopausal symptoms, you will be at greater risk for a breast cancer recurrance.
These are complex decisions, and it’s important for you and your gyno to work out the risks and benefits together.