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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2008 Dec;103(3):207-12. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2008.07.009. Epub 2008 Sep 23.

Effects of hormone therapy with estrogen and/or progesterone on sleep pattern in postmenopausal women.

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  • 1Department of Gynecology, Federal University of São Paulo (UNIFESP/EPM), São Paulo, Brazil.



To investigate the effects of estrogen and progesterone on sleep in postmenopausal women.


The 33 participants were randomly assigned to an estrogen or placebo group after undergoing clinical and hormonal assessments and a polysomnogram, and they underwent the same tests again after 12 weeks. Then, while still taking estrogen or placebo, they all received progesterone for another 12 weeks and underwent a final polysomnogram.


Estrogen plus progesterone was more effective than estrogen alone in decreasing the prevalence of periodic limb movement (PLM) (8.1% vs 2.8%), hot flashes (14.2% vs 0%), and bruxism (11.1% vs 0%) at night, or somnolence and attention difficulty during the day. The prevalences of breathing irregularities, arousal from sleep, anxiety, and memory impairment were decreased in both groups following progesterone treatment.


While not significantly affecting sleep quality, hormone therapy decreased the prevalence of arousal in both groups and that of PLM in the group treated with estrogen plus progesterone.

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