University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository

University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository


Obstetrics and gynecology, neurology


Laura Witte, PhD, PA-C


Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating neurodegenerative condition that disproportionately affects women. With no known cure, many research studies have focused on preventative measures. Since estrogen facilitates cognitive function and declines during menopause, several studies have investigated a possible causal relationship between estrogen deficiency and the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. Many of the prior perceived risks of estrogen hormone therapy reported in the landmark Women’s Health Initiative study are now discredited if started early in menopause. When administered during this window of opportunity, estrogen hormone therapy could improve cognitive function and potentially prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Further research is needed to determine the adequate dose, route of administration, and optimal duration of treatment. The decision to initiate estrogen hormone therapy should be individualized for each patient after careful consideration of risks and benefits.


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