A randomized, placebo-controlled trial of the effects of physical exercises and estrogen therapy on health-related quality of life in postmenopausal women.Menopause. 2008 Jul-Aug; 15(4 Pt 1):613-8.M
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the isolated and associated effects of estrogen therapy (estradiol valerate 1 mg/d orally) and physical exercise (moderate aerobic exercise, 3 h/wk) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and menopausal symptoms among women who had undergone hysterectomy.
A 6-month, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial with 44 postmenopausal women who had undergone hysterectomy. The interventions were physical exercise and hormone therapy (n = 9), being sedentary and hormone therapy (n = 14), physical exercise and placebo (n = 11), and being sedentary and placebo (n = 10). HRQOL was assessed by a Brazilian standard version of the Medical Outcome Study Short-Form Health Survey and symptoms by Kupperman Index at baseline and after 6 months.
There was a decrease in symptoms in all groups, but only groups who performed physical exercise showed an increase in quality of life. Analysis of variance showed that changes in physical functioning (P = 0.001) and bodily pain (P = 0.012) scores over the 6-month period differed significantly between women who exercised and women who were sedentary, regardless of hormone therapy. Hormone therapy had no effect, and there was also no significant association between physical exercise and hormone therapy in HRQOL.
Physical exercises can reduce menopausal symptoms and enhance HRQOL, independent of whether hormone therapy is taken.