What is Estrogen Replacement Therapy?
Estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) is a medical treatment used to supplement the levels of estrogen in women who are experiencing menopausal symptoms.
ERT can be administered in several ways. At our clinic, we focus on providing Estrogen Replacement Therapy (ERT) through the use of creams/gels and oral pills to cater to individual needs. For those who prefer an alternative method, dissolvable troches can be placed under the tongue for administration.
While we generally do not employ patches in our treatment plans, they can be made available if requested. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages so it’s important to discuss with your health care provider the best way for you specifically.
Hot flashes are one of the most common symptoms experienced during menopause; they cause sudden intense feelings of heat throughout your body followed by sweating and chills. ERT has been shown to reduce both the frequency and severity of hot flashes in women undergoing menopause.
Vaginal dryness is another common symptom associated with reduced estrogen levels during menopause leading to discomfort while having sex & even increased risk for urinary tract infections (UTIs). Topical treatments like creams containing estrogens have proven successful in treating vaginal dryness.
Forgetfulness or difficulty concentrating may also occur due to lack of estrogen however cognitive benefits from ERT remain uncertain although some studies suggest there could be positive effects.
Benefits of Estrogen Replacement Therapy
In addition to alleviating the symptoms of menopause, estrogen replacement therapy has been shown to provide additional benefits related to women’s health. These benefits include:
Reduced Risk of Osteoporosis: As women age and go through menopause, they naturally lose bone density, which can lead to osteoporosis- a condition where bones become weak and brittle leading to an increased risk for fractures or breaks. ERT helps prevent this bone loss by maintaining adequate levels of estrogen in the body.
Reduced Risk for Cardiovascular Disease: Heart disease is one of the primary causes of death among postmenopausal women due in part because declining hormone levels during menopause may increase their risk for heart disease particularly coronary artery disease (CAD). However studies have also demonstrated that using ERT could reduce cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure , low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol level and triglycerides.
Improved Sexual Health: Estrogen plays a vital role in vaginal lubrication & elasticity thus when it decreases during menopause it leads towards vaginal dryness, itching or burning sensations sometimes making sex painful or uncomfortable . ERT can help alleviate these symptoms thereby improving overall sexual health & quality-of-life
Cognitive Benefits: Some studies suggest that estrogen replacement therapy may benefit cognitive functioning including memory retention and recall but more research needed.
Types of Estrogen Replacement Therapy
There are two main types: traditional hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT).
Involves using synthetic hormones that are similar but not identical to the natural hormones produced by the body. These hormones include estrogen and progestogen, which are usually combined to prevent endometrial cancer. HRT can be systemic or local, depending on whether it affects the whole body or only a specific area such as the vagina.
It involves using hormones that are chemically identical to those produced by the body. These hormones are derived from plant sources and are custom-made for each individual based on their hormone levels and symptoms. BHT can also be systemic or local, but it is not regulated by the FDA.
Both types of estrogen replacement therapy can help relieve menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, mood swings, etc.
However, they also carry some risks such as increased chances of blood clots, stroke, heart attack, breast cancer and dementia. Therefore, it is important to consult with your doctor before starting any type of hormone therapy and weigh the benefits and risks carefully.
Estriol and Estradiol
Estriol and estradiol are two primary forms of estrogen, a hormone that plays a crucial role in the female reproductive system. Although both estriol and estradiol are types of estrogen, they have distinct properties and functions within the body.
Estradiol is the dominant estrogen during reproductive years and the estrus cycle. It stimulates the development and regulation of the female reproductive organs and secondary sex characteristics like breasts. Estradiol levels rise and fall during the menstrual cycle, peaking around ovulation.
Estriol is produced in larger amounts during pregnancy. It helps maintain the uterine lining during pregnancy in preparation for implantation. Estriol helps support the growth of breast tissue and other changes during pregnancy and childbirth. After delivery, estriol levels decrease sharply while estradiol levels start rising again during the next menstrual cycle.
Some key differences between estradiol and estradiol:
- Potency: Estradiol is about 10-30 times more potent than estriol in exerting estrogenic effects on reproductive tissues.
- Function: Estradiol drives the estrus cycle and sexual maturation, while estriol mainly supports pregnancy and childbirth.
- Levels: Estradiol levels fluctuate during the cycle, while estriol levels increase dramatically during pregnancy after estradiol production has surged. Estriol helps maintain high estrogen during pregnancy.
How Hormone Imbalance Affects Women’s Health
Hormonal imbalances experienced during menopause can have long-term health consequences if left untreated- including an increased risk for osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease (CAD), colon cancer etc. Osteoporosis affects bones which become weak and brittle over time leading towards fractures while CAD increases risks associated with heart attacks/strokes.
However, hormonal imbalances can also affect women’s health at other stages of life, not just during menopause. Hormonal imbalances can be caused by various factors such as stress, thyroid dysfunction, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), diabetes, obesity, etc. It can also be the cause of a variety of symptoms such as acne, hair loss, weight gain or loss, mood swings, anxiety, depression, infertility, and others.
That’s why it’s important to consult with your doctor if you suspect you have a hormonal imbalance and get tested for your hormone levels.
At Physicians Rejuvenation Centers, we offer a variety of treatments available depending on the cause and severity of your imbalance such as medication, supplements, lifestyle changes or surgery.
Contact Us Today to Learn More About How We Can Help Ease Your Hormonal Imbalance
How Estrogen Replacement Therapy Can Alleviate Symptoms and Balance Hormones
Estrogen replacement therapy works to alleviate these symptoms by restoring hormone balance in the body using either synthetic hormones manufactured in the lab (Traditional HRT) or plant-based ingredients derived from yams or soybeans i.e bioidentical hormones(BHT).
ERT helps regulate hormone levels so that individuals experiencing menopausal issues will find relief from side-effects mentioned above thus improving overall quality-of-life .
While both types come with benefits along with some risks; personalized treatment plans tailored specifically towards individual needs must be created in consultation with medical professionals who have experience dealing with hormonal imbalances.
Physicians Rejuvenation Centers proud team of elite medical directors/nurse practitioners can provide supervised hormone replacement therapy(HRT) tailored fit for your needs. Contact us today.
Bioidentical Hormone Therapy (BHT)
Bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT) is a type of hormone replacement therapy that uses hormones that have the same chemical structure as those produced naturally in the body. The hormones are derived from plant sources and are typically compounded by a pharmacist to meet the individual needs of each patient.
Differences between BHT and traditional hormone replacement therapy
Traditional hormone replacement therapy (HRT) typically uses synthetic hormones that do not have the same chemical structure as those produced naturally in the body. As a result, they can have different effects on the body and may be associated with an increased risk of certain health problems, such as breast cancer.
BHT, on the other hand, uses hormones that are identical in structure to those produced naturally in the body. This means that they are more easily recognized and utilized by the body, potentially leading to fewer side effects and a lower risk of health problems.
Personalization of BHT
One of the key benefits of BHT is that it can be personalized to meet the individual needs of each patient. This is because the hormones used in BHT are compounded by a pharmacist, who can adjust the dose and formulation to meet the specific needs of each patient.
This personalization allows for more precise treatment of hormonal imbalances, which can vary widely between individuals. BHT can be used to treat a range of conditions associated with hormonal imbalances, such as menopause, andropause (male menopause), thyroid disorders, adrenal insufficiency, and others.
The process typically begins with an evaluation by a healthcare provider who specializes in hormone therapy. The provider will perform tests to measure hormone levels and evaluate symptoms to determine whether BHT is appropriate for the patient.
Once it has been determined that BHT is appropriate for the patient, the pharmacist will compound a customized formulation tailored specifically to their needs. This may involve adjusting the dose or combining different hormones based on individual requirements.
Sexual Health and Estrogen Replacement Therapy
Menopause is a natural process that occurs in women as they age, typically between the ages of 45 and 55. During this time, the body undergoes significant hormonal changes, including a decrease in estrogen levels. This decrease can cause a range of symptoms, such as hot flashes, night sweats, mood changes, and sleep disturbances.
However, menopausal symptoms can also have a significant impact on sexual health. Many women experience vaginal dryness during menopause due to decreased lubrication caused by low estrogen levels. This can lead to discomfort during intercourse or other sexual activity.
Some women may also experience a reduction in sex drive or difficulty reaching orgasm due to changes in hormone levels associated with menopause.
Estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) has been shown to be effective at improving both physical and psychological aspects of sexual health for women experiencing menopausal symptoms.
One major benefit of ERT for sexual health is its ability to reduce vaginal dryness by increasing blood flow and lubrication production within the vagina.
As estrogen levels decline during menopause, the tissues lining the vagina become thinner, drier, and less elastic, making them more prone to tearing or injury.
Nearby glands produce less moisture, resulting in painful intercourse. With ERT, vaginal epithelium thickens which increases collagen production,reduces inflammation improves elasticity.This leads to reduced pain, soreness and discomforts .
Low libido is common among postmenopausal women. EST plays an important role when it comes to maintaining overall hormonal balance. Lowest Levels are linked with depression,tension,stress etc.
The absence of EST leads to low satisfaction rate owing to loss of pleasure from intimacy & frequent fatigue.
Accordingly, restoring EST via Hormonal replacement therapy increases sex drive and reduces stress induced effects positively affecting emotional well being too. Keep in mind that EST is not the only hormone that affects libido in women. Testosterone, which is also produced by the ovaries and adrenal glands, can also contribute to sexual desire .
Estrogen Replacement Therapy at Physicians Rejuvenation Centers
Women should take the time to consider if estrogen replacement therapy is right for them. At Physicians Rejuvenation Centers, they provide this service and can help women weigh out the risks and benefits of their unique situation.
It’s important not to rush into any decision, but to give yourself ample opportunity to explore your options – like trying on a new outfit in the dressing room before making a purchase. With regards to ERT, it’s worth investing the same amount of time and thought.
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