Women's Health Archive


National task force updates recommendations on hormone therapy after menopause

Updated national guidelines on hormone therapy after menopause recommend that women use it only for relief of menopause-related symptoms, not to prevent chronic conditions that become likelier with age.

Exercise can reduce fatigue in breast cancer patients undergoing radiation

A 2022 study suggests that regular exercise may improve fatigue and physical and emotional well-being among women undergoing radiation treatment for breast cancer.

Does inflammation contribute to infertility?

Infertility affects millions of people worldwide. Chronic inflammation has been linked to many health conditions and some research suggests it might be a contributing factor for some cases of infertility. And if true, would an anti-inflammatory diet or lifestyle boost fertility?

Late-stage cervical cancer on the rise: What to know

Cervical cancer is curable when caught early through routine screening, so research showing a surprising rise in advanced cancer cases in some groups is worrisome. Two Harvard experts share insights about the research and advice on how people can best protect themselves.

Women lack information on life after breast reconstruction

A 2022 survey suggests that a large proportion of American women know relatively little about how breast reconstruction surgery affects mastectomy patients emotionally, physically, and financially.

Alcohol may lower pregnancy odds in women undergoing fertility treatment — but caffeine is no problem

A 2022 study found that women undergoing fertility treatment who drank seven or more alcoholic beverages weekly were 7% less likely to become pregnant. The chances of live birth dropped 9% in women whose male partners drank that amount.

Why has my natural scent changed during perimenopause?

Many women report stronger body odor during perimenopause. It can result from a changed sense of smell; profuse sweating from hot flashes or night sweats; or greater prominence of testosterone, which attracts more bacteria to sweat.

Pressure shift

People often need several medications to adequately control high blood pressure. Doctors factor in more than age, sex, and race when deciding which of the 200-plus available blood pressure drugs might work for a person. Doctors also consider diet, activity levels, reproductive history, and other chronic conditions and medications. Consistent blood pressure control can be challenging, and doctors can collaborate with patients to minimize side effects common to blood pressure medications, such as dizziness and lightheadedness.

Should I get genetic testing for breast cancer?

Women should consider genetic testing for breast cancer if they have a personal or family history of breast or ovarian cancer, especially diagnosed at age 50 or younger; family history of BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations; or Ashkenazi Jewish heritage.

Is pregnancy safe for everyone?

Simply being pregnant poses significant short-term and long-term risks to health, particularly in the US. Since the Supreme Court overturned a national constitutional right to abortion last year, choices around pregnancy have gotten even more complicated — and more dangerous for some.

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