FAQ’s Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy
For decades the human body has made certain hormones to ensure the balance of a person’ health. These hormones naturally decrease with age and the onset of menopause in a woman and andropause in a man. Doctors now understand more than they ever have about the actions of these hormones. There are many benefits to anti-aging and maintenance of the body as it ages. Learning about bio-identical hormones can help patients to make an educated decision. However, it makes sense to use the exact hormones that are made in the human body, such as bio-identical hormones.
Frequently Asked Questions About Bio-Identical Hormones
What are natural or bioidentical hormones?
Natural hormones have the same chemical structures as the hormones secreted by the ovaries, adrenal glands, or testes. Therefore they are identical to what your body biologically produces.
Where do natural hormones come from?
Some natural hormones come from the yam plant, soybean plant, or Barbasco plant (giant yam).
Does a perimenopausal woman take the same dose as a postmenopausal woman?
Not usually, most commonly you start in early perimenopause with a low dose, and gradually increase to an average higher dose in menopause. With time you taper back down the dose to maintain good health while relieving the symptoms of low hormones.
What hormones are most frequently used for hysterectomy and oopherectomy patients?
Estradiol, testosterone, pregnenolone, estriol, DHEA and sometimes progesterone.
What is the best route of administration, eg. Sublingual, troche, gel, capsule, cream, pellet, tablet or patch?
Everyone is different. So what is best for one person may not be best for another. Sometimes you need to try 2 or 3 different delivery systems, until you find what works best for you. Troches and sublinguals give about 20% absorption, whereas gels and oil capsules give 10 – 12% absorption. Pellets are the most effective since 100% delivery occurs as they are released into your blood stream. They automatically work for 3-5 months and are then replaced.
When is the best time of day to take my hormones?
Ideally the best way is to take one half of the daily dose every 12 hours for troche, oral, sublingual, and topical doses. However a testosterone troche or sublingual for libido is best to take 2 hours before bedtime. Estrogen for night sweats is best to take with your evening meal. DHEA is best taken after breakfast. Progesterone is best to take at bedtime.
Will my symptoms be relieved more, the same or less with natural hormones compared to synthetic hormones?
Symptoms will usually be relieved equally or more, as long as the patient is balanced properly. Using blood hormone testing will accomplish this as well as monitoring symptoms. We prefer to treat patients not lab tests.
Will natural hormones help Osteoporosis?
Yes, when dosed properly the natural hormones will help to prevent Osteoporosis as well as synthetic hormones, if not better.
How can I increase my libido?
Blood testing for Testosterone, DHEA, Progesterone and Estradiol should be done. If these are low then natural HRT should be used with a testosterone supplement to raise the testosterone levels. This can be in a troche, sublingual, thick gel or topical cream dose form.
Will my insurance pay for BHRT?
This is very variable, but the hormones are compounded by a special pharmacy that may not contract with your insurance. However, they are often cheaper than multiple co-pays for multiple hormones all combined into one troche or capsule or cream. The pharmacy will aid you in exploring reimbursement from your carrier.