A new study published online ahead of print in Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism concludes that the presence of high levels of both testosterone and estrogen may elevate the risk for development of uterine fibroids in women who are undergoing menopausal transition. Fibroids are benign tumors that nonetheless can contribute to irregular bleeding, pelvic pain, and other complications. According to the study authors, 75% of women develop uterine fibroids by age 50; African American women or those who are overweight face a greater risk. First line treatment is typically a hysterectomy, with few other options available.
The study authors, from Stanford University School of Medicine, UC Davis School of Medicine, and University of California Irvine, assert that theirs is the first longitudinal examination of the relationship of androgen (the hormone group to which testosterone belongs) and estrogen to uterine fibroid development risk. Coauthor Jennifer S. Lee, MD, PhD, said, “The research opens up new lines of inquiry regarding how fibroids develop and how they are treated. Given that managing uterine fibroids costs an estimated $34.4 billion in annual medical expenditures nationwide, it is important to identify new ways to better treat this common condition.”
Read more about uterine fibroids, here.
Read a news story about the findings here.
The article abstract may be read here.