Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has attracted public attention as a technology claimed to slow down the natural degeneration and ‘de-feminisation’ of the ageing female body. It is a medically prescribed treatment which, in medical terms, is designed to remedy the pathological effects of oestrogen deficiency occurring at, and defining, the onset of menopause and subsequent postmenopause. HRT, it is claimed, is capable of preventing physical and mental disease, loss of libido and sexual attractiveness resulting from reduced levels of natural oestrogen in older women’s bodies (Gorman and Whitehead 1989). Since oestrogen is commonly represented as the stereotypical female sex hormone and the biological basis of femininity (Oudshoum 1994; Harding 1996), the widespread promotion of HRT has come to signal, in a broader cultural context, an attempt to maintain and reinforce sexual difference.