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Estrogen replacement therapy among elderly women: results from the 1995 medicare current beneficiary survey

      Abstract

      Research Objectives: To develop population-based estimates of estrogen replacement therapy use rates in 1995 among women over age 65 living in the community; to estimate the impact of socioeconomic and health characteristics on estrogen use. Method: Estimates are based on a large, nationally representative sample of Medicare beneficiaries; detailed self-report data were merged with Medicare claims. Results: Overall, 13.1% of women reported use of estrogen replacement therapy in 1995. Estrogen users were more likely to be white, age 65–74, with private insurance, high income, history of osteoporosis and heart problems, no history of breast cancer, and a patient of gynecologists. Conclusions: Estrogen use was substantially lower among the socioeconomically disadvantaged, controlling for medical history variables, suggesting considerable inequity in access to estrogen replacement therapy treatment.
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