Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT)
The aging process can be challenging as hormone levels decline causing significant changes in the body, including low energy, weight gain, loss of sleep, and loss of libido. At Lynchburg Aesthetics, Dr. William Carvajal,offers Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) treatments, which help restore the natural balance of hormones within the body while reducing the risk of many diseases associated with aging. If you are suffering from negative effects of fluctuating hormone levels, BHRT is beneficial to both men and women who desire to optimize the balance of their hormones.
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The benefits of hormone therapy dependon whether you take systemic hormone therapy or low-dose vaginal preparations of estrogen.Systemic hormone therapyis the most effective treatment for the relief of troublesome menopausal hot flashes and night sweats. Estrogen can also ease vaginal symptoms of menopause, such as dryness, itching, burning and discomfort with intercourse.Combined estrogen and progesterone therapy may reduce the risk of colon cancer. Systemic estrogen helps protect against the bone-thinning disease called osteoporosis.
Low-dose vaginal preparations of estrogen can effectively treat vaginal symptoms and some urinary symptoms while minimizing absorption into the body. Low-dose vaginal preparations do not help with hot flashes, night sweats or protection against osteoporosis.If you haven’t had your uterus removed, your doctor will typically prescribe estrogen along with progesterone or progestin (progesterone-like medication). This is because estrogen alone, when not balanced by progesterone, can stimulate growth of the lining of the uterus, increasing the risk of uterine cancer. If you have had your uterus removed (hysterectomy), you don’t need to take progestin.
Who should avoid hormone therapy?
Women who have or previously had breast cancer, ovarian cancer, endometrial cancer, blood clots in the legs or lungs, stroke, liver disease, or unexplained vaginal bleeding should not take hormone therapy.
The male hormone replacement therapy differs slightly in terms of the side effects and the treatment required.As men age, their levels of testosterone plummet, which causes a hormone imbalance and increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, muscle loss, fatigue, sleep problems, low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and weight gain. The process in which the testosterone levels decrease as a man ages is referred to as Andropause (male menopause). Testosterone has been proven to help reduce the risk of these diseases that are linked to the aging process; therefore, BHRT can reduce the risk of these medical conditions by balancing testosterone levels.For men suffering from low levels of testosterone, a low-T therapy, in which the levels of the hormone are increased, may be recommended. As a result, patients begin see the above side effects reversed.
Is BHRT right for me?
Prior to beginning a treatment to determine if BHRT is a good fit for you, levels of estrogen and progesterone for women, and testosterone for men, will be tested. At that time, Dr. Carvajal will also discuss your symptoms and how they affect your daily life.After reviewing your lab work, symptoms, and medical history, Dr. Carvajal will determine if BHRT is a recommended course of action for you.