Hormone Therapy for Women
Hormone replacement therapy is now a widely available treatment option that’s growing in popularity among women over the age of 35, specifically those who feel run-down, prone to weight gain (sometimes for the first time in their lives) and out of other options when it comes to managing symptoms of menopause. Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) can help balance these hormones and improve certain conditions.
What are the Symptoms of Hormone Imbalances?
Hormones are an essential part of the workings of every cell in the human body, and regardless of age, a woman’s hormones all work together to keep her in balance. When hormones are unbalanced they can cause a variety of symptoms that include:
- Decreased fertility
- Hot flashes
- Loss of muscle mass
- Weight gain
- Irregular or Painful Periods
- Low libido
- Memory lapses
- Mood swings
- Night sweats
- Poor concentration
- Tender or fibrocystic breasts
- Urinary incontinence
- Vaginal dryness
What are “Bioidentical” hormones and how are they different?
Bioidentical hormones replacement differs from ordinary hormone replacement in a very important way.“Bioidentical” means the therapy is tailored for each patient and is meant to replicate each individual’s hormonal blueprint. Bioidentical hormones are an exact structural replica of endogenous hormones, and side effects are rarely observed.
3 types of hormones that are typically prescribed by doctors are:
Estrogens actually refers to a group of related hormones, each with a unique profile of activity. Under normal circumstances, a woman’s circulating estrogen levels fluctuate based on her menstrual cycle.
For Hormone Replacement Therapy, these hormones are often prescribed in combination to re-establish a normal physiologic balance. The three main estrogens produced in female humans are:
- E1 (Estrone; 10-20% of circulating estrogens) is the primary estrogen produced after menopause.
- E2 (Estradiol; 10-30% of circulating estrogens) is the most potent and major secretory product of the ovary, and the predominant estrogen produced before menopause.
- E3 (60-80% of circulating estrogens)
- is commonly prescribed for peri-menopausal women to counteract “estrogen dominance” which occurs when a woman produces smaller amounts of progesterone than normal relative to estrogen levels.
- alone, or combined with estrogen, may improve Bone Mineral Density.
- minimizes the risk of endometrial cancer in women who are receiving estrogen.
- is preferred by women who had previously taken synthetic progestins.
Hormones that are important to the integrity of skin, muscle, and bone in both males and females, and have an important role in maintaining libido.
Androgens, such as testosterone and DHEA:
- enhance libido.
- enhance bone building (increase calcium retention).
- provide cardiovascular protection (lower cholesterol)
- improve energy level and mental alertness.
Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy include:
– Helps eliminate or reduce hot flashes and night sweats
– Accelerates fat burning for increased weight loss
– Enhances overall sexual experience: sex drive, libido and prevents vaginal dryness
– Increases energy and reduces depression
– Improves sleep
Here at Family Pharmacy we can create BHRT medications (Estrogen, Progesterone, Testosterone, DHEA, Pregnenolone, & Thyroid) in the following delivery forms:
- Transdermal Creams & Gels
- Vaginal Suppositories