Premarin: not many women really know the truth behind these effective tablets prescribed as hormone replacement therapy. Perhaps a careful evaluation of the wording may give a hint: Pre..mar..in... pregnant mare urine. Indeed, this medication derives from a pregnant mare's urine. There may really not be much to be concerned about giving this a thought. Most every body may imagine a pregnant mare eating grass with a collection cup somehow affixed beneath the mare's tail to collect urine.
Trouble starts however, when the reality is a far cry from a mare enjoying the outside in a pasture. Truth is, the mares employed to collect urine for the distribution of Premarin are kept in very inhumane conditions, turning them from animals with an identity, into simply urine producing machinery with no other purpose in life.
The mares are basically left in small stalls all day with a collection cup placed beneath them. They have minimum range of movement often unable to turn around and lay down comfortably. To make things worse, they are kept this way for six months, usually from October to April with little or no exercise or social interaction with their species.
According to the Humane Society of the United States, there are over 500 PMU farms in North America. with at least 50,000 PMU mares employed in the production of the drug. Of course, after these pregnant mares have donated every ounce of urine they could give, they will give birth to several foal. What happens to the foals then? Many are recycled into the PMU inustry, while another good part of them are slaughtered for their meat.
Fortunately, perhaps it's a good thing after all, the lives of these mares is considerably shortened. From horses typically living 25-30 years, PMU mares generally live only 5-6 years. A high percentage of them having sustained serious leg injuries.
So what can women affected by menopause issues do? There are actually more humane ways of producing the required estrogens and this occurs through the use of plant derived or synthetic estrogens.
Women concerned about the well being of these horses, should consider that pregnant mares are used for producing the following drugs Prempro, Premphase, Prempac, and Premelle. These can present as well under various forms such as pills, creams, injections, patches and vaginal rings.
To make things worse for Premarin users, recent Danish studies demonstrate that Premarin has been linked to higher risks for ovarian cancer. According to the article ''Hormone Therapy Boosts Risk for Ovarian Cancer in Danish Study '' by Nicole Ostrow quoted:
''The researchers found that using hormone therapy results in about one extra case of ovarian cancer for roughly every 8,300 women taking the treatments each year.''
So is taking Premarin really worth it? Apparently it seems to harm many: mares, their foals and now even women taking the medication, leaving benefits merely to the multi bilion dollar PMU industry: the Wyeth company.