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Effect of hormone replacement therapy on carotid arterial compliance in healthy postmenopausal women

Studies of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) effects on arterial compliance in postmenopausal women have produced conflicting results. In cross-sectional studies, HRT was associated with improved arterial compliance. 1–4 In support of a potential benefit, withdrawal of HRT for 4 weeks was found to reduce systemic arterial compliance, associated with increased pulse-wave velocity, compared with treatment values. 1,5 However, prospective treatment trials in postmenopausal women that used ultrasonography to determine common carotid artery luminal dimensions showed no consistent effect of HRT on arterial compliance. 6,7 The inconsistency of these results may be due to study design, cohort chosen for study, estrogen dosage, or technique used to evaluate arterial compliance. We performed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of the effect of HRT on carotid artery compliance in healthy postmenopausal women using high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Twenty-five postmenopausal women (average age 59 ± 6 years) who were in good health and had taken no medications, HRT, or vitamin supplements for at least 2 months and who had not smoked for at least 2 years were enrolled into this study. All had cessation of menses for >1 year, plasma 17β-estradiol levels <50 pg/ml, and a follicle-stimulating hormone level >50 U/L. Study http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The American Journal of Cardiology Elsevier
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