Society Of Gynecologic Oncologists Release: Study Finds Estrogen Replacement Therapy Poses Little Risk Of Recurrence For Women Treated For Endometrial Cancer

SAN DIEGO, Feb. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- In a study conducted over a five year period with more than 1,200 women with early-stage endometrial cancer, a team of physicians found that estrogen replacement therapy was associated with a low incidence of endometrial cancer recurrence.

In the largest prospective randomized controlled trial to date, 618 women were selected to receive estrogen replacement therapy following surgery for stage I or II endometrial cancer and 618 women were selected randomly to receive a placebo. Both groups were treated for three years, with an additional two years of follow-up. Due to an enrollment drop in the study following the June 2002 publication of the Women's Health Initiative results regarding the risks and benefits of estrogen plus progestin in healthy menopausal women, data was accrued for 1,236 evaluable patients rather than the 2,108 patients originally sought.

Overall, the study found a low incidence of disease recurrence or death in both the estrogen replacement therapy group and the placebo group. There was also a similarly low incidence of new cancer diagnoses of any type, including breast cancer, in both groups. The survival rate for the study population was 96.6 percent.

"Based upon the results of this study, I am prescribing estrogen-only hormone replacement therapy for interested patients who are experiencing symptoms of menopause and perimenopause following surgery for endometrial cancer," said Richard R. Barakat, M.D., Gynecology Service, Department of Surgery, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Dr. Barakat also noted that the effects of estrogen-only hormone replacement therapy are still being evaluated by the Women's Health Initiative.

More information about the findings can be found in the manuscript "A Prospective Randomized Double-Blind Trial of Estrogen Replacement Therapy Versus Placebo in Women with Stage I or II Endometrial Cancer: A Gynecologic Oncology Group Study." The authors of the study are: Richard R. Barakat, MD, Gynecology Service, Department of Surgery, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center; Brian N. Bundy, MD, Department of Biostatistics, Roswell Park Cancer Institute; Nick M. Spirtos, MD, Women's Cancer Center, Palo Alto, California; Jeffrey Bell, Department of Gynecologic Oncology, Riverside Methodist Hospitals, Columbus, Ohio; and Robert S. Mannel, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Oklahoma.

It is estimated that 40,100 new cases of endometrial cancer and 6,800 deaths from the disease will occur in the U.S. in 2003.

The SGO is a national medical specialty organization of physicians who are trained in the comprehensive management of women with malignancies of the reproductive tract. Its purpose is to improve the care of women with gynecologic cancer by encouraging research, disseminating knowledge which will raise the standards of practice in the prevention and treatment of gynecologic malignancies and cooperating with other organizations interested in women's health care, oncology and related fields. The Society's membership is primarily comprised of gynecologic oncologists, as well as other related medical specialists such as, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists and pathologists. SGO members provide multidisciplinary cancer care including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, supportive care and surgery. More information on the SGO can be found at

Society of Gynecologic Oncologists

CONTACT: Amy Ruth of Society of Gynecologic Oncologists, Mobile,+1-202-256-7312

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