PLEASE NOTE THAT ALL MEDICAL ADVICE GIVEN IS AS ACCURATE AND COMPREHENSIVE AS POSSIBLE BUT IT IS ONLY GENERAL ADVICE AND SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR CONSULTING YOUR OWN DOCTOR FOR INDIVIDUAL ADVICE.

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Not true for most women. 1 in 7 women will get breast cancer at some point in their lives. Risk factors include being female, growing older, drinking 2 or more units of alcohol a day, BMI of 30 or over and smoking. Exercise reduces risk. For many it is just bad luck. Oestrogen only HRT (if you have had a hysterectomy) is associated with little or no change in risk. Combined HRT can be associated with a small increase in risk. However this has to be considered in context with the reduction in cardiovascular disease, endometrial and bowel cancer and dementia. All cause mortality is reduced in women on HRT. Only a small number of breast cancers are caused by inherited genetic mutations but if you are worried about your family history your doctor can check the NICE guidelines to see if you need referral to a family history clinic to assess your risk eg if your sister or mother are diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 40. There are examples of who should be referred on the NICE website and lots more information on breast cancer and HRT on womens-health-concern.org #hrt #breastcancerawarenessmonth #bebreastaware #breastcancerfamilyhistory #knowyourfamilyhistory #NICE #womenshealthmatters #womenshealthconcern #menopauseawarenessmonth #risksversusbenefits #informedchoices #makemenopausematter

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Not true with the right HRT. Oral HRT does increase the risk of venous thrombosis so should be avoided if your BMI is 30 or over, once you are over 60, if you or close relatives have had a venous thrombosis in the past or if you have a known inherited blood clotting disorder. However transdermal HRT (patches, gel or spray)has been shown to be safe in these cases. Oral micronised progesterone (Utrogestan) is our only bodyidentical progesterone option and also does not increase the risk over your background risk. #hrt #menopauseawarenessmonth #knowyourrisk #knowyouroptions #menopause #perimenopause #deepveinthrombosis #pulmonaryembolism #thrombophilia #makemenopausematter #8moremythstoleaduptoworldmenopauseday#noobviousconnectionofphototobloodclotsbutIloveelephants

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Not necessarily true! The most beneficial time to start HRT is within ‘the window of opportunity’ which is under the age of 60 or within 10 years of your last period. This significantly reduces your risk of future cardiovascular disease (heart and blood vessel problems) but this benefit is lost if you start at a later age. However, whatever age you start HRT it will still benefit your bone health as well as helping with all the other symptoms which can go on for many years. Lots of women have been told to stop their HRT in the past but they can restart after a gap if they are still getting symptoms. It is very important to begin with a much lower dose than the standard one and build up very slowly if needed when starting or restarting after this window. Oestrogen should be given through the skin after the age of 60. #hrt #transdermalhrt #windowofopportunity #menopauseawarenessmonth #menopause #hotflushes #nightsweats #menopausalsymptoms #makemenopausematter

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Not true. 5% of women have the onset of the menopause before the age of 45, 1% before the age of 40 and 0.1% before the age of 30. If under the age of 40 it is called premature ovarian insufficiency, POI for short. As well as menopausal symptoms these women are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and cognitive impairment. However 12-14% do not experience any symptoms so may not seek medical advice. It is really important that all women with POI are given HRT(or in some cases the combined contraceptive pill initially) until the age of 52. #earlymenopause #prematuremenopause #prematureovarianinsufficiency #prematureovarianfailure #hrt #menopauseawarenessmonth #worldmenopausedayiscomingsoon #6moremythstocomebutihaveplentyspare #makemenopausematter

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Oh no. There are over 40 symptoms of the perimenopause and menopause. As well as these 2 well-known symptoms (that not every woman gets) possible physical symptoms include headaches, worsening migraines, palpitations, feeling faint or dizzy, difficulty sleeping, low energy, aching muscles, painful joints, sore breasts, weight gain around the middle, vaginal dryness and soreness, loss of libido, urinary symptoms and recurrent infections, dry mouth, sore mouth, metallic taste, thinning hair, dry and itchy skin, increased facial hair and spots, dry eyes, ears or nails, a sensation like insects crawling over your skin, restless legs, tingling extremities, tinnitus, change in body odour and an increase in allergies. Psychological symptoms include anxiety, panic attacks, low mood, depression, mood swings, irritability, more emotional, loss of joy, poor concentration, brain fog, poor memory, loss of confidence, low self-esteem and lack of motivation. #menopauseawarenessmonth #hrt #menopausalsymptoms #perimenopausalsymptoms #youarenotdevelopingdementia #dontgiveupworkreplaceyouroestrogeninstead

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Not true. Why suffer the symptoms and long term health implications of the menopause if you are able to take HRT? Only a small proportion of women have a medical contraindication. Your reducing oestrogen can be replaced with bodyidentical oestrogen, derived from yams to be the same molecular structure. Our bodies were designed to work with oestrogen. When we used to die soon after the menopause it didn’t matter that our arteries were furring up and our bones were thinning. Nowadays we are living longer and these conditions can seriously affect our quality of life as we age. #bekindtoyourself #selfcare #hrt #menopauseawarenessmonth #preventativemedicine #preventionisbetterthancure #osteoporosis #cardiovascularhealth #nomedalsforsuffering #informyourself #makemenopausematter

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Not true. Guidelines are that if your periods stop under the age of 50 you need to continue contraception for at least another two years,. If you are over 50 when your periods stop you need to continue contraception for at least one year. If you are on a type of contraception that alters or stops your bleeding you may not know when your menopause has happened. In some cases your GP can arrange an FSH blood test to help with this. This photo shows the Mirena/IUS which can act as reliable contraception and also the progestogen part of HRT so is a great option for many women. Others prefer to use the progestogen only pill (minipill) or condoms. All women can stop contraception once they are 55. #contraception #mirena #intrauterinesystem #minipill #progestogenonlypill #condoms #bettersafethansorry #hrt #menopauseawarenessmonth #makemenopausematter

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So wrong. Most women will get symptoms of vaginal dryness at some stage. For some it is the first symptom of the approaching menopause, others may not notice any changes until they are much older. As well as dryness, women can experience soreness, itching and urinary symptoms, including recurrent urinary infections. It can become too uncomfortable to have sex, ride a bicycle or even wear jeans. Sadly this problem only gets worse without long-term treatment. Local vaginal oestrogen is a very safe and effective option. It is not absorbed into the circulation but just acts locally. It can be supplied via vaginal cream, gel, pessaries or a ring. The ring (pictured) is flexible and easily inserted into the vagina and changed every 3 months. About 75% of women who go on HRT find their vaginal symptoms settle but 25% need to continue vaginal oestrogen as well. If you are suffering I recommend reading Me and My Menopausal Vagina by Jane Lewis for lots more useful information and you can follow her via @my_menopausal_vagina #hrt #localoestrogen #menopausalsymptoms #perimenopausalsymptoms #mymenopausalvagina #estring #menopauseawarenessmonth #recurrenturinaryinfection #saddlesore #dontignorethesigns #ignoretheinformationleafletmoredetailinmyth17tomorrow #makemenopausematter

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Not a good idea when the information is wrong! All HRT package leaflets list all the possible risks of the old type of oral HRT. Almost all of these risks do not apply to oestrogen through the skin and none of them apply to vaginal oestrogen. However women understandably get put off starting their treatment if their doctors have not explained this. Campaigners such as @lizearlewellbeing and @themenocharity founded by Dr Louise Newson are trying to tackle this issue but meanwhile women are missing out on safe and effective treatment for their symptoms. #hrt #vaginalhealth #oestrogen #inaccurate #menopauseawarenessmonth #worldmenopausedaytomorrow #onemoremythtocomeanditsabigone #makemenopausematter

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Not true. Testosterone is an important hormone for women too, helping with libido, energy levels, mood and concentration. It is produced in the ovaries and the adrenal glands and levels gradually reduce with age. Young women who have their ovaries removed surgically may suffer from a dramatic drop in levels. NICE guidelines say that testosterone can be considered for those that need it, once established on a suitable dose of oestrogen (plus a progestogen if required). However most GPs are not yet confident in prescribing it and some are not allowed to prescribe on the NHS due to local restrictions. We do not currently have a licensed preparation for women in the UK so small doses of the preparations for men can be used on the NHS off-licence. There is also an Australian product designed for women called Androfeme 1 which can only be prescribed privately. This is my last myth (for now) and I wish you all a very happy World Menopause Day 2020! Please feel free to share my myths series. So many women are being deprived of HRT when they could really benefit from it. Every women needs to be able to make her own decision about whether or not to take HRT based on the evidence, not the myths. #hrt #worldmenopauseday #worldmenopauseday2020 #menopauseawarenessmonth #menopauseadvice #perimenopause #menopause #surgicalmenopause #testosterone #testosteronereplacementtherapy #testosteronetherapy #makemenopausematter

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