Premenopausal use of hormonal contraceptives may improve women’s cognitive abilities

Premenopausal use of hormonal contraceptives may improve the cognitive abilities of women in midlife and for years afterward. This finding may have implications for prevention of declining cognitive function that occurs with advancing age and in diseases such as Alzheimer's. The beneficial effects of hormones increase the longer a woman uses them, as described in a study published in Journal of Women's Health, a peer-reviewed publication from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Journal of Women's Health website at http://www.liebertpub.com/jwh.

Kelly Egan, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, and Carey Gleason, PhD, William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital, Madison, WI, present the results of cognitive performance tests administered to women enrolled in the Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer's Prevention in the article "Longer Duration of Hormonal Contraceptive Use Predicts Better Cognitive Outcomes Later in Life."

"This study provides preliminary evidence that hormonal contraceptives may have a protective cognitive effect, even years after use is discontinued," says Editor-in-Chief Susan G. Kornstein, MD, Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Women's Health, Executive Director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Institute for Women's Health, Richmond, VA, and President of the Academy of Women's Health.

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