Oral contraceptives and hormone treatment increase stroke risk


A new study from IGP show that oral contraceptives and also hormone replacement therapy at menopause increase the risk of stroke. The increased risk was largest during the first year of treatment, after which it declined. The study, which is now published in the journal Stroke, is based on data from more than a quarter of a million women from the database UK Biobank.

In the study from Åsa Johansson’s research group, the researchers compared the presence of stroke, and the specific subtypes cerebral infarction and cerebral hemorrhage, between women who had used external hormones and those that had not.

Women who started using oral contraceptives had an increased risk of stroke, but only during the first year of use. If they continued using oral contraceptives, the risk declined and after more than one year of use they could no longer find any increased risk.

For women who had been given hormone replacement therapy in connection with menopause, the researchers found an increased risk for both cerebral infarction and cerebral hemorrhage during the first year of hormone treatment and the risk of cerebral infarction remained high even after the first year.

More information:
Research news Uppsala University (in Swedish)
Article in Stroke
Åsa Johansson’s research

Last modified: 2022-01-26