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Progesterone and estrogen appear to have a positive effect on lung function and reduce the symptoms of asthma, according to a report published by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH) researchers in the March issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, the scientific journal of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. "We found that women's lung function and asthma symptoms improve when estrogen and progesterone levels are raised, both naturally during certain times in the menstrual cycle and with the administration of oral contraceptives or hormone replacement therapy," said one of the study's lead researchers.
Excessive bleeding, a troublesome side-effect that causes many women to stop taking hormone replacement therapies (HRT), is less likely with progesterone than with more commonly used synthetic versions. Results from a national clinical trial published in the November issue of the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, show that a combination of estrogen and micronized progesterone (MP) causes fewer days and less intense bleeding than the most commonly used combination. Previous studies have shown that unacceptable bleeding is the reason that most women discontinue HRT during the first year of therapy.