Bio-identical hormone therapy
Health + Wellness

What Is Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Are those hot flashes interfering with your daily schedule?  Are night sweats preventing you from getting a good night’s sleep?  Having menopausal symptoms but are wary of HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy)?  Maybe bio-identical hormones are for you.  Bio-identical hormones are used for the relief of severe menopausal symptoms. A “bio-identical hormone” is defined as a molecule which happens to be identical to a hormone that is produced by the human body.

Interest in this therapy began around 2002 when a large research project studying synthetic hormone replace therapies was stopped after the researchers discovered that these therapies were causing serious side effects such as heart attacks, strokes, and cancer. After this, researchers began looking into various alternatives for hormone replacement therapy.

One such alternative that surfaced was bioidentical hormone replacement. Bioidentical hormone replacement uses medications that include molecules that are an exact chemical match to those made naturally by humans.  This is different from using synthetic or animal-based hormones used previously.

The three major hormones made by the ovaries happen to be, estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone.  Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy intends to provide a mixture involving these hormones to replace the woman’s reproductive hormones. Bio-identical hormones are distributed in two categories, the ones that are custom-made by compounding pharmacies (non-FDA approved due to the one-of-a-kind nature of the product) and ones produced by pharmaceutical companies (FDA approved). Both variations are available in different forms such as pills, gels, creams, patches, creams and even vaginal rings.

Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy is mostly used to decrease the symptoms of menopause. Many practitioners promote this therapy for anti-aging purposes and also to improve the quality of life. There are claims that bio-identical hormone therapy can protect the eyes and skin from drying and aging, regulate the menstrual cycle, improve mental function, lower blood cholesterol and reduce hot flashes and night sweats.

If you are interested in exploring bioidentical hormone therapy, consult with your doctor or medical provider to see if it is right for you.

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