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Bioidentical hormones for women with vasomotor symptoms

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, August 2016
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (81st percentile)
  • Above-average Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (51st percentile)

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3 Facebook pages

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Title
Bioidentical hormones for women with vasomotor symptoms
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, August 2016
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd010407.pub2
Pubmed ID
Authors

Ana Marcia IS Gaudard, Sulani Silva de Souza, Maria ES Puga, Jane Marjoribanks, Edina MK da Silva, Maria R Torloni

Abstract

Various hormone therapies (HT) are available to treat menopausal vasomotor symptoms. Bioidentical hormones are chemically identical to those produced by the human body, and several types are well-tested and available on prescription. Many women have opted for bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT) on the assumption that it is safer than other forms of HT. We evaluated the evidence. To determine the effectiveness and safety of bioidentical hormones compared to placebo or non-bioidentical hormones for the relief of vasomotor symptoms. In July 2015 we searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, PubMed, Embase, Literatura Latino-Americana e do Caribe em Ciências da Saúde (LILACS), registers of ongoing trials and the reference lists of articles retrieved. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) comparing bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT) versus placebo or non-bioidentical hormones. We used standard methodological procedures expected by the Cochrane Collaboration. Our primary outcome was vasomotor symptoms (hot flushes and night sweats). We evaluated the overall quality of the evidence using Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation criteria (GRADE). We included 23 RCTs (5779 participants). Most studies (20/23) included only women with moderate to severe hot flushes. All studies compared unopposed 17 beta-estradiol (beta-estradiol) versus placebo or conjugated equine estrogens (CEE). None of the studies reported night sweats as a separate outcome. BHT patch versus placebo Frequency of hot flushesFour RCTs reported data suitable for analysis. There were fewer hot flushes in the BHT group, with a moderate to large effect size (SMD -0.68, 95% CI -0.83 to -0.53, four RCTs, 793 women, I(2) = 67%, low quality evidence). There was moderate heterogeneity, but a consistent direction of effect. Seven RCTs reported data unsuitable for analysis; all reported a benefit in the intervention group. Symptom intensityTwo RCTs reported analysable data. Measured on a 0-100 visual analogue scale (VAS), hot flush intensity was lower in the BHT group (MD -19.94 points, 95% CI -24.86 to -15.02, two RCTs, 393 women, I(2) = 54%, low quality evidence). There was moderate heterogeneity, but a consistent direction of effect. Adverse effectsAdverse events (such as headache, vaginal bleeding, breast tenderness and skin reactions) were more common in the intervention group (odds ratio (OR) 2.14, 95% CI 1.29 to 3.54, 9 RCTs, 1822 women, I(2) = 73%, low quality evidence). There was moderate heterogeneity, but a consistent direction of effect. In one study, five women in the intervention group developed endometrial hyperplasia. BHT gel versus placebo Hot flush frequencyThree RCTs reported this outcome, but the data were unsuitable for analysis. All reported a benefit in the BHT group. Adverse effectsAdverse events were more common in the BHT group (OR 1.41, 95% CI 1.09 to 1.83, 3 RCTs, 1086 women, I(2) = 0%, moderate quality evidence). Oral BHT versus placebo Hot flush frequencyTwo studies reported analysable data. There were fewer hot flushes in the BHT group, with a moderate to large effect size (SMD -0.80, 95% CI -1.03 to -0.57, two RCTs, 356 women, I(2) = 14%, low quality evidence). Adverse effectsThere was no evidence of a difference between the groups (OR 1.28, 95% CI 0.84 to 1.96, 3 RCTs, 433 women, I(2) = 0%, low quality evidence). Topical BHT emulsion versus placebo Hot flush frequencyOne study with data unsuitable for analysis reported a benefit in the intervention group. Adverse effectsThere was no evidence of a difference between the groups (OR 1.46, 95% CI 0.80 to 2.66, one RCT, 200 women, low quality evidence). Intranasal BHT versus placebo Hot flush frequencyOnly one study reported analysable data. There were fewer hot flushes per day in the BHT group (MD -3.04 95% CI -4.05 to -2.03, one study, 458 women, moderate quality evidence) Adverse effectsAdverse events (such as headache, breast tenderness, arthralgia and nausea) were more common in the intervention group (OR 1.96, 95% CI 1.26 to 3.03, one RCT, 458 women, moderate quality evidence). Subgroup analysesSubgroup analyses by dose of BHT suggested that higher doses of BHT may be associated with more effectiveness but also higher risk of adverse effects. BHT patch versus 0.625 mg CEETwo RCTs reported this comparison, but the data were unsuitable for analysis. Hot flush frequencyBoth RCTs reported no evidence of a difference between the groups. Adverse effectsFindings were inconsistent. In one comparison (0.1 mg BHT versus CEE), breast pain and vaginal bleeding were more frequent in the BHT group. Oral BHT versus 0.625 mg CEE Hot flush frequencyOne study with data unsuitable for analysis reported no evidence of a difference between the groups. Adverse effectsThere was no evidence of a difference between the groups (OR 1.20, 95% CI 0.50 to 2.87, one RCT, 103 women, very low quality evidence). There was low to moderate quality evidence that BHT in various forms and doses is more effective than placebo for treating moderate to severe menopausal hot flushes. There was low to moderate quality evidence of higher rates of adverse effects such as headache, vaginal bleeding, breast tenderness and skin reactions in the BHT group. There was some evidence to suggest that higher doses of BHT are associated with greater effectiveness but also with higher risk of adverse effects. Although all the included studies used unopposed estrogen, it is recommended best practice to use progestogen therapy in women with a uterus taking estrogen in order to avoid endometrial hyperplasia, regardless of the source of the estrogen. No data are yet available about the safety of BHT with regard to long-term outcomes such as heart attack, stroke and breast cancer.There was no good evidence of a difference in effectiveness between BHT and CEE, and findings with regard to adverse effects were inconsistent. The quality of the evidence was too low to reach any firm conclusions.The main limitations in the quality of the evidence were study risk of bias (mainly due to poor reporting of methods), imprecision and lack of data suitable for analysis.

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Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 111 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United Kingdom 1 <1%
United States 1 <1%
South Africa 1 <1%
Unknown 108 97%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 24 22%
Researcher 12 11%
Student > Ph. D. Student 11 10%
Student > Bachelor 10 9%
Student > Postgraduate 9 8%
Other 25 23%
Unknown 20 18%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 45 41%
Nursing and Health Professions 14 13%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 5 5%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 4 4%
Psychology 4 4%
Other 13 12%
Unknown 26 23%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 9. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 21 March 2018.
All research outputs
#1,748,103
of 12,689,756 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#4,421
of 10,400 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#48,061
of 262,841 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#75
of 155 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,689,756 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 86th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 10,400 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 20.3. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 57% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 262,841 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 81% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 155 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 51% of its contemporaries.