Skip Navigation LinksHome > May/June 2009 - Volume 16 - Issue 3 > Attitudes of obstetrician-gynecologists toward the evidence...
doi: 10.1097/gme.0b013e31818fc36e

Attitudes of obstetrician-gynecologists toward the evidence from the Women's Health Initiative hormone therapy trials remain generally skeptical

Power, Michael L. PhD; Anderson, Britta L. BA; Schulkin, Jay PhD

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Objective: To examine the opinions of obstetrician-gynecologists regarding hormone therapy (HT) and the results from the Women's Health Initiative (WHI).

Methods: Separate surveys were sent to two groups of practicing obstetrician-gynecologists: (1) respondents to a 2004-2005 survey (follow-up 1) and (2) members of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' Collaborative Ambulatory Research Network (follow-up 2 CARN). These studies complete a longitudinal study investigating obstetrician-gynecologists' opinions of the evidence from WHI.

Results: Response rates were 64.5% and 58.8%, respectively. Responses from both surveys were generally consistent with the results from the 2004-2005 survey. A majority of physicians from both survey populations were skeptical of the combined HT results. Respondents were more likely to find the results of the unopposed estrogen trial convincing. Similar to the results from the 2004-2005 study, CARN physicians generally disagreed with the decision to end the WHI trials. Unlike the 2004-2005 study, there was no consistent effect of either age or year that residency was completed on physician opinions. Similar to the 2004-2005 study, physicians who considered alternative therapies as viable treatment options were more likely to report that they found the trial results convincing. The results from follow-up 2 CARN indicate that physicians in the south were most likely and physicians in the east were least likely to prescribe HT, suggesting that unmeasured sociocultural parameters might influence HT prescribing practice.

Conclusions: Obstetrician-gynecologists remain generally skeptical of the WHI results, although less so of the estrogen-only trial. The early end to the trials may have contributed to their skepticism.

©2009The North American Menopause Society


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