Bioidentical Hormone Therapy

bioidentical hormone therapyThe decision to undergo hormone replacement therapy(HRT), always has been and perhaps always will be, a controversial one.  There are many things to consider before embarking on hormone therapy, but lately there`s been a new kid on the block in the relief of menopausal symptoms– bioidentical hormone therapy(BHT).

Traditional Hormone Therapy

The hormone therapy that we`re all familiar with, uses the urine from pregnant mares, plus a host of chemical additives to achieve the same effect as the hormones that are naturally produced by our body.  The introduction of these elements to the body can have some very undesirable side effects, as synthetic hormone therapy is unable to take into account the differences in the hormonal make-up of individual women.  They may be metabolized and react differently than expected in some people.

The slightest deficiency or excess of a certain hormone can tip the body off balance. Sometimes, when this happens, it may make you feel out of sorts, unwell and even depressed. It may cause one of any number of different complaints. This is where bio-identical hormone replacement therapy comes in.

The Case For Bioidentical Therapy

Devotees claim that Bioidentical therapy is said to be more of a natural menopause remedy , as the raw materials used as the basis for the hormones, are extracted from plants.  Although the word “natural” is nowadays bandied around as part of many a sales pitch and it could be argued that the mare`s urine is a natural substance, so I would prefer to use botanical as a description.

How Does It Work?

bio-identical hormone therapySome bioidentical hormones are tailored for the individual woman, replicated from saliva or blood samples.  These are compounds and as they aren`t a standard formula, it is impossible to test every individual preparation.  Compounds therefore, are not approved by the FDA.  This does not mean that the medication is dangerous or would not benefit the patient, but there is no requirement for the dispenser to provide the usual warnings that must be given with FDA approved hormone therapy.

Bioidentical hormones – which the therapy is are available in a variety of forms, such as oral, patches, creams, lotion or drops.  It is believed that transdermal delivery often leads to more consistent hormonal levels.
The reason that many women may not be aware of BHT is that these hormones are considered to be identical to those that occur naturally in the body and as such, they cannot be patented.  Just as one cannot patent skin or muscle.  This unfortunately offers little incentive for the large pharmaceutical companies to pursue the treatment and instead they prefer to offer only the artificial hormones that can be patented.

There are some doctors however, who are offering this alternative.

What Are The Benefits?

bio-identical hormone therapyEstrogen:

  • Reduces risk of heart disease
  • Decreases risk of bowel cancer
  • Improves quality of sleep
  • Improves mood
  • Decreases blood pressure
  • Reduces wrinkles
  • Maintains bone density
  • Increases sexual desire

Progesterone :

  • Builds bone
  • Lowers high blood pressure
  • Increases metabolic rate
  • Protects against endometrial cancer
  • Helps balance estrogens
  • Natural anti-depressant
  • Lowers cholesterol

If you are interested in exploring the possibility of undergoing bioidentical therapy, speak with your doctor and find out if he offers the treatment.  If not he may well be able to refer you to a practitioner who does.