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Women who stop taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) may lose bone mineral density (BMD), but their rate of bone loss is similar to that among women who never took HRT, according to data from the Postmenopausal Estrogen/Progestin Intervention Study. As reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine, a total of 495 postmenopausal women were randomized to HRT or placebo and were followed for 7 years.
After treatment cessation, women who took HRT for 1 year had an annual rate of BMD loss of 0.5% at the hip and 0.81% at the spine.
Among women who took HRT for 3 years, this rate was 1.01% at the hip and 1.04% at the spine following treatment cessation. Women who did not take HRT lost about 1% of BMD in the first year of the study and about 0.5% annually thereafter.