Hormone Replacement Therapy and Breast Cancer:

The Women’s Health Initiative has issued warnings in the past that certain hormone replacement medications have the ability to harm many women. For example, Prempro is a drug that has been taken by as many as 6 million women in just one year. Statistically, it did not seem that the increased risk of developing breast cancer from using this hormone replacement therapy was all that great. Statisticians stated that there would be a .08% additional case of breast cancer for every 10,000 women that did take Prempro as opposed to those that did not. Another .07% of women that take Prempro would have a heart attack. 0.8% additional women taking Prempro would have a stroke. Apparently, these numbers were based on a research into the number of additional cases reported and extrapolations therefrom.
Statistics do not sound all that harmful when taken in the abstract. .08% does not sound like a great risk. However, if 6 million women took Prempro in any one calendar year, that .08% would mean an additional 4,800 additional breast cancer cases. 4,200 more heart attacks and 4,800 more strokes. Moreover, there are many other side effects which are related to the use of hormone replacement therapy.
Despite the life threatening and significant health risks associated with hormone replacement therapy such as Prempro, countless women continue to use hormone replacement therapy. After all, it has been around for many years and has almost become accepted, some calling it a rite of menopause passage. Some women look to drugs now to deal with menopause as opposed to more healthy means of reducing the menopause symptoms without deadly side effects of some of the hormone replacement medications. While synthetic hormone replacement therapy such as Prempro may provide some relief from menopausal symptoms, based on research done to date, it does not appear that some of the synthetic replacement therapy is not worth the risk, particularly when safe alternatives exist for use by women.
We have noted recently in following the litigation associated with Prempro that some of these cases are now going to trial. Recently there was a huge verdict up in Philadelphia where a jury found that the manufacturer had failed to disclose its knowledge of the increased risks associated with the use of Prempro returning a large punitive damage award. While some medications might be more harmful than others, obviously, all women deserve the right to know the truth and particularly deserve the right to know what risks are

If you or a family member have suffered injury from the use of any dangerous drug, you should confer with counsel to preserve your rights. Some dangers are avoidable – with proper warnings – and manufacturers should be taken to task when they fail to warn of known dangers.

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