Menopause and Cancer

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Menopause and Cancer

Postby Tilly » Tue May 24, 2005 4:08 pm

No one will ever convince me that these fluctuating hormone levels don't effect everything. I wonder if studies are being done on if fluctuating hormones can cause cancer cells to grow. I know of women who have have been considered cured of their cancer and then when they started menopause the cancer came back. It could be a coincidence but I personally think there is something to it. They seem to be able to spend all kinds of research money on everything else I hope someone is looking into this.

Postby drjudy » Tue May 24, 2005 6:55 pm

Dear Tilly,

Interesting question, but I was unable to come up with any answers or indications of research in this area.

Menopause is associated with an increase in insulin resistance, and insulin levels rise as a result. Insulin-like growth factor rises as well, and this protein is associated with increased risk of colon cancer. In fact, colon cancer is more common in diabetics on insulin and persons with high circulating insulin levels that result from insulin resistance.

In addition, menopause is associated with a disruption of collagen as estrogen levels fall. The integrity of connective tissue such as collagen may be important to checking the spread of cancer.

I'm sure there are other potential connections. Thanks for your curiosity. This makes me curious as well.

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Postby Tilly » Wed May 25, 2005 2:27 pm

Thank-you Dr Judy I'm glad someone agrees that it is something that needs to be more closely looked into :?: . I was hoping to hear from some of the other ladies on the board about this. Dr Judy brought up some very good points. Anyone else have thoughts on this:?:

Postby Tilly » Wed May 25, 2005 2:45 pm

Here are two examples. I worked with a women who had cancer (not sure what kind) she went through chymo etc. and seems cured. She was 40 at the time and then at 50 she began having a very hard time with menopause, terrible hot flashes. I remember her coming to work and telling us about her symtoms and what a hard time she was having this went on for close to a year and then "bam" they found a spot of cancer on lung and 2 years later she died. I know of another women who in her late 20's had a cancerous tumor. Operated and went through treatment, considered cured. Then 20 years later at age 49 (had started menopause) her cancer returned but in a different location. Coincidence, :?: maybe but that is why I would like to hear from others. Do you have stories or thoughts on this? and do you think research should be done :?:

Postby Tilly » Sat Jun 04, 2005 7:53 pm

I'm really surprised that no one has added a post here. I will add one more story.

My friends daughter had 2 melanoma moles removed and she was told to not get pregnant at least right away until they made sure they had gotten it all because of the hormonal changes. I think this is further proof that hormones can effect our risk of cancer.

I hope someone else has a story to share or just a thought.

Menopause and Cancer

Postby DayDreamer » Sun Jun 05, 2005 8:11 am

Dear Tilly

Your post got me thinking. I have lost two friends (both incidently to bone cancer) and who lived (at the time) in the same village as me. Although it was a decade between their deaths and I had moved away during that decade, I felt it a little more than a coincidence that two of my friends had died from the same cancer. Although I know there could be a million reasons, when I lost my second friend 2 years ago, I tried to find a reason. One smoked one didn't. One liked a tipple, the other didn't. They both had 2 children (although one started her family later ) and lived similar life styles. As far as I could ascertain there were no environmental "clusters" at the village. But, since I read your post it got me thinking again. They were both in menopause (50 and 51) and one had part of her thyroid removed in her twenties so had to be on thyroid hormone by tablet every day. May be the menopause was a factor. As you say, research is needed. We already know that certain HRT can be a factor in cancers, so having hormone imbalances at menopause isn't a huge leap to take. Having said that, we have to also keep it all in perspective otherwise every woman reaching menopause wouldn't be here to tell the tale :lol:

Perhaps through this forum some researcher may take notice and take up the challenge who knows :)

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