More than six years after the Women’s Health Initiative Study was suspended due concerns regarding the long-term health risks associated with the drugs new information continues to emerge. The newest evidence, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, was noted in the Nurses’ Health Study, a study involving 51,637 postmenopausal nurses who provided data regarding their medical histories and use of HRT since 1976. In 2002, the researchers began to collect data regarding the prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
In this study, 23% of participants noted GERD symptoms, but current and past users of hormones were at a greater risk. It was also noted that HRT users who ingested the highest doses of the drugs or took them for the longest periods of time were more likely to suffer from GERD. The authors concluded that this condition may very well be triggered in part by hormone levels. It was suggested that GERD be added to the growing list of known risks of HRT drugs (a list that also includes breast cancer, ovarian cancer, stroke, heart attack, and blood clots), and that these risks be carefully weighed against the benefits of taking the hormones by every patient before deciding whether to initiate therapy.
Currently, more than 10,000 women are pursuing lawsuits against Wyeth, Pfizer, and other manufacturers of post-menopausal combination hormone therapy drugs such as Prempro and Premarin + Provera.
The Mass Tort Team at Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, P.A. is pursuing potential claims on behalf of injured victims. If we can provide you with additional information, please feel free to contact our firm.