Skip to main content

Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy, Is it For You?

If you are a woman of a certain age, you are probably experiencing hormonal changes.  And take it from us -- hot flashes, mood swings, weight gain and other physical and emotional issues are no fun. To alleviate these troubling symptoms, your doctor might recommend hormone replacement therapy.  

But be aware that traditional HRT drugs like Premarin have been linked to an increased risk of endometrial cancer and heart disease. An alternative, however, is the more “natural” form of HRT you may have heard Oprah raving about, known as bio-identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT).  To give us the skinny on bio-identical hormones, we interviewed Dr. Gino Tutera, a respected obstetrician-gynecologist in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Everything She Wants: What are the benefits of taking bio-identical hormones for peri-menopausal and menopausal women?

Dr. Tutera: The benefits for bio-identical hormones come from utilizing hormones that have the exact chemical structures as what the body produces, therefore exerting a much more natural effect compared to the effects of synthetic or non-human hormones. The body recognizes these hormones as their own and receive the same beneficial effects as if the body was increasing its production once again.

ESW: What are the risk factors of taking bio-identical hormones for peri-menopausal and menopausal women?

Dr. Tutera: The risk factors are the same as any other hormone utilized. But the chances of adverse effects are lessened considerably compared to the use of other forms of hormone replacement.

ESW: You work with a form of BHRT where rice sized pellets are inserted under the skin tailored to a woman's unique body type and hormonal needs.  How does this differ from other types of BHRT?

Dr. Tutera: The pellets can be placed painlessly under the skin. After placement, the body itself controls the release of the hormone by the heart rate and cardiac output, which is not the mechanism of action for all other forms of HRT. Those other forms control the body and the body cannot alter the release, while the pellets are under the complete control of the body. Also, the hormone released from the pellets does not use the liver for metabolism unlike many of the oral and injectable methods of hormone delivery.

ESW: What age should women start taking bio-identical hormones, and how long should women use them?

Dr. Tutera: Starting the use of hormones differs from patient to patient. Women with testosterone deficiency may need it in their late 20's; women with menstrual migraines may start even earlier. The usual time to see if you need hormone therapy depends on when the patient begins suffering the problems of anxiety, loss of libido, difficulty sleeping, loss of muscle tone, decreasing exercise tolerance, putting on fat, and loss of mental acuity. 

ESW: Other than the pellets, what is the efficacy of BHRT in pill form versus creams?

Dr. Tutera: Hormones in a cream form are a safer route of administration, and may help with symptoms. But you must have blood work before and after starting therapy to see if you are getting internal benefits, and not the just the relief of symptoms.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Conway Discount Clothing Chain Closing in New York City

It's the end of an era. Conway discount stores are closing . As of this weekend, a sign on the sole Herald Square location (34th Street btwn 7th and 8th Ave) says the store will close in "7 Days." Before I relocated to New York City, I was introduced to the discount chain while on a bus trip from Baltimore.  I recall the first time I saw Conway's signature pink bags carried by hurried shoppers in midtown. And Miss Foster, the trip organizer and a bargain hunter from way back, took me to the store for the first time. Conway store in the Fulton Mall./Tracy E. Hopkins When I moved here in 1994, my love affair with Conway continued.  I furnished my first apartment with discount knick-knacks and home goods from the store.  And much to my chagrin, in hindsight, I curated most of my wardrobe for my first full-time job from the long-shuttered 42nd Street and Third Avenue store. One regretful ensemble: Lime green and white checkered pants with a matching lime green

Win a $50 Gift Card for Fall Fashion Trends on Amazon.com!

Tweens and teens aren't the only ones who need new clothes for fall.  We also need new tops, frocks, and trousers for work and play.  Fortunately, Amazon.com has launched the new Amazon Contemporary Shop to suit our grown-up fashion needs. Me (r) and a model (l) wearing a MINKPINK maxi skirt from Amazon.com. The online boutique is stocked with trendy clothing, shoes and accessories for women and men by designer brands like Halston Heritage, Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent, Rock & Republic, BCBGeneration and more. I even picked up a great pair of Heidi Klum for New Balance (HKNB) sneakers for under $55! So, are you ready to shop?  Everything She Wants will help one lucky reader jazz up her fall wardrobe with a $50 gift card to use online in the Amazon Contemporary Shop. Here's how to win: Retweet this post (if you don't have a Twitter account it's easy to sign up on Twitter.com) Subscribe to Everything She Wants via Google Connect, email or RSS Feed.

Giveaway: Thank Your Friends with Merci Chocolates!

National Friendship Day was August 4, 2013, but Everything She Wants has decided to continue the celebration with a giveaway from merci fine European chocolates . While some friendships are for a season or a reason, other friendships are built to last a lifetime.  I’m fortunate to have two best friends: Cindy, whom I’ve known since junior high school and Deanna, who started out as my amusing intern.  Besides my mother and my husband, these girlfriends are my greatest confidants.  They’re like the sisters I never had and we’ve supported each other through personal trials and triumphs. So what better way to say ‘thank you’ to your friends than with merci chocolates?  One lucky reader will win a ‘Friendship Kit’  that you can either keep to reward yourself for being such a great friend or share with a deserving comrade. The kit includes: $25 Target gift card (yay!) 7 ounce box of merci chocolates A picture frame to display a photo of you and your friends A choc