Women's International Pharmacy E-Newsletter

Hormones on Our Minds and on Our Nerves
Reviewed by Carol Petersen, RPh, CNP- Women's International Pharmacy

Hormones on Our Minds and on Our Nerves

George Orwell's novel 1984 predicted a society with language controls and "double speak." It astonishes me how accurate these predictions have been in the field of medicine, as evidenced by the fact that various medical establishments meet regularly to decide how their members ought to think about issues such as hormones."

Some say that, without sufficient evidence to the contrary, all estrogens are alike and all progesterone/progestins are alike. Even basic science courses, going back decades, demonstrated that there were differences between molecules created by the body and those created or engineered by scientists- significant differences, including the molecule's shape, size and functions. Recently, the KEEPS study opened the door to the idea that perhaps all estrogens are NOT alike, so adjustments to their thinking are being made. (See www.keepstudy.org for more info.)

One of the most enduring (and preposterous) pronouncements has been that women without a uterus do not need progesterone. The idea is that the hormone progesterone has a single function, which is to slough off accumulated tissue in the uterus, and that it has no other effects on the body. In a perverse way, this pronouncement has saved numerous women from the effects of progestins (altered progesterone molecules) such as medroxyprogesterone, which was implicated in the Women's Health Initiative Study with an increase in breast cancer risk.

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Book Review: Paleo Dog: Give Your Best Friend a Long Life, Healthy Weight, and Freedom from Illness by Nurturing His Inner Wolf by Jean Hofve, DVM, and Celeste Yarnall, PhD
Reviewed by Carol Petersen, RPh, CNP- Women's International Pharmacy

Paleo Dog by Jean Hofve, DVM, and Celeste Yarnall, PhD

Paleo Dog is a primer for the care and wellness of your dog. However, by following the principles outlined by Jean Hofve, DVM, and Celeste Yarnall, PhD, you might do yourself and your human household a lot of good as well.

Dogs are "opportunistic omnivores," meaning that they will eat almost anything, but dogs actually evolved eating prey animals. So, what does a modern-day Paleo Dog eat? The Paleo Dog diet excludes all cereals and grains, and processed or synthetic foods. Paleo Dogs eat primarily bones, organ meats, eggs, non-starchy vegetables, and fish oils. This is basically the same diet that has become increasingly popular for humans, with names like the "Stone Age" diet or "Caveman Diet."

According to the authors, approximately 78 million dogs live in US households, with 85% of those dogs eating a typical commercial dog food diet (which closely resembles the composition of a human "fast food" diet). About half of the dogs eating commercial dog food diets are overweight, and about 75% of them have some sort of dental disease by the age of three. The death rate due to cancer is over 40% for dogs under 10 years old. Death in dogs typically occurs between 10 and 13 years of age, and most often from cancer.

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Testosterone: Friend or Foe?
Kathy Lynch, PharmD - Women's International Pharmacy

Pharmacist Corner

There have been few medical debates more contentious than the current controversy surrounding testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) and cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Two recent studies highlighted a possible, though far from probable, association between TRT and myocardial infarction (MI) or stroke. However, the Androgen Study Group (ASG), which was formed to respond to inaccurate attacks on TRT by the medical and public media, quickly discovered misreporting that resulted in two published corrections to one of the studies. With support from medical societies, researchers, and scientists around the world, ASG petitioned the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) to retract one of the misleading studies.

Dr. Neal Rouzier, a geriatric specialist who routinely prescribes testosterone to his male patients, has also been vocal in his criticism of the JAMA study. He reports that none of the 2,000 male patients he has treated with TRT experienced MI, and he maintains that 40 years of radiologic and laboratory studies demonstrate long-term protection against plaque buildup. Although low levels of testosterone have consistently been associated with an increase in CVD and mortality, Dr. Rouzier supports a cautious approach when prescribing TRT in older men with CVD or significant risk factors.

A new study, presented at the 2013 meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, found that low testosterone levels are associated with an increased number of acute MIs in diabetic men. Another recently published study found that older men who received testosterone injections did not appear to have an increased risk for MI. In fact, testosterone injections actually appear to be protective in men at high risk for MI. Clinical data compiled from 40 Low T Centers nationwide also found no association between TRT and MI or stroke.


"Association of Testosterone Therapy With Mortality, Myocardial Infarction, and Stroke in Men With Low Testosterone Levels" by R. Vigen, C. O'Donnell, A.E. Baron, et al; JAMA; 2013; 310(17): 1829-1836.

The Androgen Study Group

"A Critical Review of the PLOS Study: Increased Risk of Myocardial Infarction Following Initiation of Testosterone Therapy in Men" by Neal Rouzier, MD; Mar 14 2014.

"Low Levels of Testosterone Linked With Acute MI in Male Diabetics" by Michael O'Riordan; Sep 25 2013.

"Risk of Myocardial Infarction in Older Men Receiving Testosterone Therapy" by J. Baillargeon, R.J. Urban, Y.F. Kuo, et al; Ann Pharmacother 2014 Jul 2; 48(9): 1138-1144 (Epub ahead of print).

"New Research Findings Conducted by the Low T Institute Contradict Controversial Testosterone Studies" by R.S. Tan, W.G. Reilly and K. Cook; May 27 2014.



Staff at Women's International Pharmacy



In This Issue
Hormones on Our Minds and on Our Nerves
Book Review: Paleo Dog by Jean Hofve, DVM, and Celeste Yarnall, PhD
Testosterone - Friend or Foe

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