HRT supplements the reproductive hormones that your body’s no longer making in sufficient amounts. It’s available as a:
For women, HRT usually involves a customized prescription for estrogen and progesterone to help alleviate the symptoms of menopause, while at the same time minimizing some of the health risks associated with the condition.
Menopausal women who take a customized HRT prescription can get relief from a range of symptoms, including:
Because the risk of osteoporosis increases as estrogen levels drop, HRT can also help preserve bone density, protecting you against this condition.
Bioidentical hormones, which are derived from plant sources, are identical in molecular structure to the hormones that your body makes. Because your body can’t distinguish them from its own hormones, they function in the exact same way as your natural hormones.
Conventional HRT, on the other hand, involves the use of synthetic hormones, which are structurally different than your natural hormones. This may be why conventional HRT is sometimes associated with unwanted side effects.
Besides being a safe and effective way to manage menopause symptoms, HRT with bioidentical hormones may also be useful for some younger women with intense symptoms of a hormonal imbalance. If you’re affected by severe PMS-related mood swings, breast tenderness, headaches, or bloating, ask your gynecologist if bioidentical HRT is an option for you.
In general, HRT is only recommended as a short-term treatment, and should not be considered as a primary preventive measure for either heart disease or osteoporosis. You should avoid HRT if:
For some women, HRT may increase the risk of:
After a comprehensive exam and medical history, your doctor at Connecticut Women OB/GYN can tell you if bioidentical HRT is right for you.