The time of menopause provides an excellent opportunity for physicians to educate their patients toward preventive care that involves life-style modification and disease screening. It is also the time to consider appropriate hormone replacement therapy. Most postmenopausal women are candidates for such therapy, which has beneficial effects on serum cholesterol levels and other cardiovascular risk factors and protects against osteoporosis, urogenital atrophy, and vasomotor symptoms. A small number of patients have specific risk factors for or contraindications to hormone replacement therapy. In general, however, hormone replacement therapy can be of great benefit to the expanding population of postmenopausal women.
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