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Alison Beaver

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AUDIO: Dr. Jill Siegfried - Is Lung Cancer More Fatal In HRT Recipients?

By Dr. Jill Siegfried Expert
 
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Right, okay, so here’s my concern: It sounds like if this information comes out directly from the WHI which, correct me if I am wrong, came out in 2001, why did it take so long for this information to roll out now in 2009?

Dr. Jill Siegfried:
Well, because they had to follow the women for many years to see who was actually going to die from what types of illnesses; that’s called the follow-up period. So, the study was actually stopped early because the number of heart attacks and so on actually turned out, I believe, to be higher in the hormone therapy group. And that was, I believe, was the primary end point, was they were trying to protect against cardiovascular disease, and it turned out cardiovascular disease was either no better or was worse with the hormone therapy.

So they stopped. The women didn’t take the hormones any more, but they were still in the study. They were continued to be followed for their general health. So suppose someone was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2002. Well, we are not going to know until at least 2004 whether or not they are dying from that disease. You see, so I mean, to get statistical significance when you are comparing groups you have to go out for long periods of time so that more and more people are data points in your analysis.

Todd:
It’s just fascinating to me. Okay, so was there any indication on, or do you have any information on why it is that hormone replacement therapy has this type of increased fatality for lung cancer patients? Is it toxicity?

Dr. Jill Siegfried:
Yes.

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