The effects of transdermal estrogen delivery on bone mineral density in postmenopausal women: A meta-analysis

Document Type : Review Paper


1 PhD Student,Students'Research Office,Shahid Beheshti univercity of medical sciences,Tehran, Iran.

2 Pharm.D.,Ph.D, Biomaterials Department, Iran Polymer and Petrochemical Institute, Tehran, Iran

3 Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran.

4 Professor, Department of Immunology, Faculty of medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

5 Assistant Professor, Department of Reproductive Health, Nursing and Midwifery Faculty, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

6 Professor, Reproductive Endocrinology Research Center, Research Institute for Endocrine Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Background: Due to its minimal systematic adverse effects, transdermal estrogen is widely used for the prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.The present meta-analysis aimed to clarify the effects of transdermal estrogen on bone mineral density (BMD) of postmenopausal women.
Methods: Studies were identified by searching electronic databases including Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, Embase, and CINAHL databases, and the Sciences Citation Index. Systematic review of articles published between January 1989 to February 2016.Reference lists of the included articles were also evaluated and consultations were made with relevant experts. While 132 studies included the desired keywords, only nine clinical trials met the inclusion criteria and were finally reviewed.
Main results: The pooled percent change in BMD was statistically significant in favor of transdermal estrogen. According to the resulting pooled estimate, lumbar spine BMD one and two years after transdermal estrogen therapy was respectively 3.4% (95% CI: 1.7-5.1) and 3.7% (95% CI: 1.7-5.7) higher than the baseline values. The test for heterogeneity was not statistically significant based on the I2 heterogeneity index.
Discussion: One-two years of transdermal estrogen delivery can effectively increase BMD and protect the bone structure in postmenopausal women.


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