Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone levels change as we age, which causes a variety of unpleasant symptoms in both men and women. Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) replenishes the hormones your body needs to function. Patients experiencing the symptoms of perimenopause, menopause or andropause (male menopause) can benefit from BHRT. Symptoms may include fatigue, loss of libido, mood and memory dysfunction, sleep disturbance, weight gain, and more.

A visit to talk about bioidentical hormone therapy will include an extensive medical history, combined with blood or saliva testing, and it is possible that a regimen will
be prescribed that might include supplements, bioidentical compounded hormones, and changes to diet and exercise.

What are Bio-Identical Hormones?

Bio-identical hormones have the same chemical structure as hormones that are made by the human body. Structural differences that exist between human, synthetic and animal hormones can be responsible for side effects that are experienced when non-bio-identical hormones are used for replacement therapy.

The term “bio-identical” does not indicate the source of the hormone, but rather indicates that the chemical structure of the replacement hormone is identical to that of the hormone naturally found in the human body.

Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy Benefits

  • Better sleep
  • More energy/endurance
  • Enhanced cognition, concentration, and memory
  • Improved complexion
  • More stable moods and decreased irritability
  • Improved sex drive and sexual function
  • Sense of well-being
  • Increased muscle mass in men
  • Preservation of bone mass
  • Weight loss
  • Improved cholesterol levels and blood sugar regulation

Hormone Related Symptoms and Problems in Women:

  • PMS
  • Poor concentration
  • Memory lapses
  • Weight gain
  • Mood swings
  • Reduced libido
  • Osteoporosis
  • Vaginal thinning/dryness
  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Insomnia/disturbed sleep
  • Increased fatigue

Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) can effectively control symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, insomnia, vaginal dryness, and frequent urinary tract infections.

Hormone Related Symptoms and Problems in Men:

  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Reduced libido
  • Osteoporosis
  • Heart disease
  • Irritability
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Depression, anxiety
  • Reduced muscle mass
  • Reduced cognitive function

Andropause (also known as the “male menopause”) is the gradual decline in testosterone levels in middle-aged men.

There are Three Types of Hormones:

Estrogens

    • May increase HDL “good” cholesterol and decrease LDL “bad” cholesterol
    • Helps to decrease blood pressure and reduce plaque formation on the arterial walls
    • May improve mood, energy levels, and sleep patterns
    • May reduce the risk of developing or the severity of type 2 diabetes
    • May improve memory and cognitive function
    • May reduce bone loss

The three principle estrogens in humans are estriol (E3), estradiol (E2), and estrone (E1). These hormones are often prescribed in various combinations to re-establish a normal physiologic balance.

In addition to treating menopausal symptoms in women, ERT has been shown to be effective in decreasing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and colorectal cancer.

Testosterone

    • Enhance libido
    • Enhance bone building (increase calcium retention)
    • Provide cardiovascular protection (lower cholesterol)
    • Improve energy level and mental alertness

The addition of the androgens, testosterone, and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) are key to alleviate menopausal symptoms and further protect against osteoporosis, obesity, and diabetes in women.

Natural testosterone replacement is central to the treatment of andropause in men.

The indication for testosterone-replacement therapy (TRT) requires the presence of a low testosterone level, and signs and symptoms of hypogonadism. When hormones are replaced or restored back to physiological (Normal) levels, men may experience a dramatic reversal of many of these changes.

The diagnosis of low testosterone levels is based on the presence of signs or symptoms and must be confirmed by laboratory testing. Proper monitoring of laboratory values and clinical response are essential for optimal testosterone replacement therapy.

Men who have low testosterone levels are at more of a risk for developing all types of heart disease (cardiovascular disease), are at a higher risk of developing prostate cancer, and have a higher incidence of enlarged prostates.

Progesterone

    • Is necessary during pregnancy for maintenance of the uterine lining
    • May enhance the beneficial effect of estrogen on lipid and cholesterol profiles
    • Stimulates new bone growth
    • Helps to “turn off” estrogen

Progesterone is commonly prescribed for perimenopausal women to counteract estrogen dominance.” Perimenopause is the time between the onset of changes in hormonal secretions and menopause and is characterized by fluctuating hormones. Estrogen dominance occurs when a woman produces smaller amounts of progesterone relative to estrogen levels.

Goals of BHRT:

  • Alleviate the symptoms caused by the natural decrease in the production of hormones by the body
  • Give the protective benefits which were originally provided by naturally occurring hormones
  • Re-establish a hormone balance

Synthetic versus Natural Thyroid (Also Known as Desiccated Thyroid Hormone) Medications

Natural Thyroid formulations such as Nature-Throid, Armour, and WP Thyroid are derived from desiccated porcine (pig) thyroid glands which contain not only T4 like
in synthetics but also T3. Natural thyroid from desiccated thyroid has been used to treat thyroid problems for more than 100 years as reported in medical journals and books. Natural thyroid formulations also target T2, T1, and Calcitonin which can be beneficial.

Synthetic thyroid medications such as Synthroid and Levothyroxine contain Thyroxine (T4), which is the identical hormone produced by the thyroid gland. Synthetic formulations contain only T4 which must be converted to T3 by the body for it to work. This conversion is done by the de-Iodinase enzyme and in some people, this enzyme is deficient or not working. In these patients despite thyroid levels improving the patient’s symptoms may not.

At the Riordan Clinic, we prefer utilizing natural thyroid formulations, also known as desiccated thyroid hormones. Your provider can review your history and labs to determine the best possible natural thyroid medication best for you.

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Related Research & Information

  • Your Hormones: Why You Need Them, Why You Can’t Live Without Them   READ BLOG ARTICLE
    Learn more about Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy – by Mike Bauerschmidt, M.D., C.C.T.
  • Holistic Approaches to Hormone Therapy  READ BLOG ARTICLE
    Learn more about Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy – by Mike Bauerschmidt, M.D., C.C.T.

 

Videos

CLICK TO ENLARGE Videos

Why does Riordan Clinic use Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Why does Riordan Clinic use natural thyroid hormone replacement threrapy?
Exploring Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy
Bioidentical Hormones: Are they Safe?
Balancing Hormones for the Natural Treatment of PMS and Other Female Disorders

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