Research Article| Volume 64, ISSUE 4, P228-234, December 20, 2009

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Health correlates and mode of administration of hormones—Are there any differences between parenteral and oral estrogen preparations?

  • Y. Du
    Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Clinical Research Center of Women's Health, Berlin, Germany
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  • S. Schwarz
    Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Clinical Research Center of Women's Health, Berlin, Germany
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  • H. Knopf
    Department of Epidemiology and Health Monitoring, Division of Non-Communicable Disease Epidemiology, Robert Koch-Institute, Berlin, Germany
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  • M. Dören
    Corresponding author at: Charité Campus Benjamin Franklin, Klinisches Forschungszentrum Frauengesundheit, Hindenburgdamm 30, 12200 Berlin, Germany. Tel.: +49 30 8445 3227; fax: +49 30 8445 2352.
    Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Clinical Research Center of Women's Health, Berlin, Germany
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Published:September 24, 2009DOI:



      To investigate use-associated differences between parental and oral hormone therapy (HT) users in reference to HT non-users regarding self-rated general health status, quality of life, health service utilization, and selected chronic diseases.


      All cases of last-week medicine use were recorded among 2248 women aged 40–79 who participated in the German Health Interview and Examination Survey 1997–1999. 89 current parenteral HT users and 322 oral HT users were identified. Health correlates were compared between the two groups in reference to HT non-users.


      Oral HT users had a poorer current health status as well as an impaired health status compared to the year before, were less satisfied with their health and life in general, and showed a lower quality of life regarding ‘body pain’ and ‘vitality’ in comparison with hormone non-users (all p < .05). Parenteral HT users showed no significant difference compared with HT non-users and oral HT users, respectively, in these health correlates except for a less satisfaction with health found in comparison with HT non-users (p = .002). Prevalences of cerebral-cardiovascular diseases were not different among women using parenteral or oral HT use. Parenteral HT users visited the offices of general practitioner and gynecologists more frequently than oral HT users as well as hormone non-users (all p < .05).


      Oral HT use is associated with a negative assessment for health well-being whereas parenteral HT use shows largely a neutral effect. Further designated studies could clarify whether the mode of hormone administration consistently affects health-related quality of life and whether the mode of hormone treatment influences the choice of outpatient facilities for surveillance of therapy.


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