Diabetes Incidence Lower in Women Receiving Hormone Therapy

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In women with heart disease, hormone therapy reduced the incidence of diabetes by 35 percent, according to researchers at the University of California, San Francisco.

In a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial that took place at 20 U.S. clinical centers, 2,763 postmenopausal women with coronary heart disease were followed for 4.1 years.

At the study’s beginning, 734 women had diabetes, 218 women had impaired fasting glucose and 1,811 women had normal blood-glucose levels. Participants took either 0.625 mg of conjugated estrogen plus 2.5 mg of medroxyprogesterone acetate or a placebo daily.

The researchers discovered that fasting blood-glucose levels increased significantly among women who took the placebo but did not change among women receiving hormone therapy. The incidence of diabetes was 6.2 percent in the hormone therapy group and 9.5 percent in the placebo group.

Annals of Internal Medicine, January 7, 2003

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