Experiences of HRT


My wife has recently had a radical hysterectomy and oophorectomy following a diagnosis of adenocarcinoma of the cervix.

She was told initially by her surgeon that, due to the nature of her cancer beng glandular, that HRT was not an option for her and she would have to endure a 'hard' menopause or risk a greater chance of re-occurrence of the cancer.

We have subsequently been informed by another surgeon and some other nursing staff that there is no clear link between HRT and re-occurrence and that, if there is any risk at all assoicated with HRT, then it is miniscule.

We are obviously confused at this mixed message and I wanted to ask if anyone has any experience of being in a similar situation that they might be able to share some guidance on ?

My wife would obviously like to take HRT if there is no increased risk of re-occurence of her cancer.

Many thanks in advance


Welcome Austin,

I also had adenocarcinoma (diagnosed in May 2017) and was told right away that I wasn’t a good candidate for HRT because of the type of cancer I had.  Once treatment started, the symptoms started - I had my first mild hot flash about a week after my first chemo. My symptoms were hot flashes, trouble sleeping at night, fatigue, and an unyielding need for ice cream and potato chips.

About a month or two into my treatment the hot flashes were almost unbearable - at its worst I was probably catching fire about 15 to 20 times per day and they would wake me up throughout the night. When I spoke again with my oncologist about it at my 3-month checkup, he said that if I felt I couldn’t handle them, we could look into some alternatives to HRT that might help with some symptoms, and if that didn’t help then we could weigh the risk vs benefits of HRT. I said I’d give it another 3 months and let him know, and at my 6-month check up I had to admit that the symptoms were quite a bit less.

At almost 9 months post treatment, I still feel warm at night, but I sleep with only a sheet or a very light blanket and have a fan by the bed, and staying cool helps me to sleep through the night.  I don’t really catch fire regularly anymore - I may have only had one hot flash in the last month.  Fatigue is still a bit of an issue, but I had an aggressive treatment and really can’t say if it’s the menopause or the treatment recovery that is causing that.  I can say that it is getting better, though, slowly but surely.

At this point, all I’m taking is a calcium supplement.  Easy peasy.

I would suggest to her to just see how her symptoms play out and if they are just too disruptive in her life, then she can decide to either research some alternatives or pursue the HRT.  Every woman is different, and maybe she will be lucky and it just won’t have to be a decision she has to make. For me, I’m very happy not to have to take the HRT.

Full disclosure:  I was just finishing an ice cream cone when I read your post...

Thank you Daisy for such a helpful response.  All the best to you in your ongoing recovery and I definitely think you deserve another ice cream.  You've made me want one now too !



Good luch and only all the best!