Hormone Replacement Therapy
What is Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Hormones are involved in most of the body’s basic functions like digestion, appetite, immune function, brain function, libido, and mood. Low or imbalanced hormone levels can have widespread effects on your health and feeling of well-being. For many people, the solution is hormone replacement therapy, which just as it sounds, is the use of medications to replace the hormones your body isn’t producing.
At Belmar, we compound bioidentical hormones for men and women. Bioidentical hormones have the same molecular structure and act the same as natural human hormones. Many doctors and patients today are choosing bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) as the preferred treatment for declining or imbalanced hormones.
Benefits of Bioidentical Hormone Replacement TherapyOur pharmacists compound our BHRT prescriptions from scratch, using plant-derived natural ingredients from FDA approved sources. Unlike a traditional non-compounding pharmacy, we can combine, remix, or change a medication’s active ingredients and additives. This is especially important in hormone replacement therapy, because patients have widely varying needs. To provide each patient with the best mix of relief and convenience, physicians need options in hormone types, dosages, and delivery systems.
The most common use of BHRT is to treat the symptoms of menopause in women. These can include hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, sleep problems, fatigue, weight gain, loss of muscle mass, foggy thinking, and mood changes.
Postmenopausal osteoporosis affects many women during the first decade following menopause. Bones become brittle, fragile, and easily fractured. It is one of the most common postmenopausal problems that doctors treat.
Until they reach menopause, women are protected from many cardiovascular problems by their female hormones. However, once estrogen and certain adrenal hormones start to decline, women may need hormone replacement therapy to help protect their heart and blood vessels.
BHRT may help with vaginal dryness in women, decreased libido in both sexes, and sexual functioning issues in men.
Men and women can lose muscle mass and strength as hormone levels decrease. Hormone replacement can help patients continue enjoying their favorite sports and activities.
Hormonal changes in menopause or andropause can cause or worsen mood swings, anxiety disorders, or depression. In addition to worry, fear, agitation, irritability, nervousness, and irrational thoughts, patients can have physical symptoms — rapid heart rate, shortness of breath, nausea, numbness, lightheadedness, shakiness, and high blood pressure.
Who May Benefit from Hormone Replacement Therapy?
BHRT can benefit many people as they age and experience a drop in hormone levels. Age-related changes in hormone levels can cause problems that range from wellness issues to serious medical conditions.
BHRT therapy can also be useful for younger patients who have any of the conditions listed above. No matter what age you are, if you suffer from a hormone imbalance, hormone replacement therapy may help.
Who Should Avoid Hormone Replacement Therapy?
However, BHRT isn’t right for everyone. Not everyone gets these symptoms as they get older; if you don’t, there’s no need to fix what isn’t broken! Also, the potential risks and side effects can vary from individual to individual, based on a patient’s medical history and lifestyle. You should always consult carefully with your doctor about your current hormone levels and the potential pros and cons of hormone replacement for you. Make sure your doctor knows if you:
- Think you may be pregnant
- Are experiencing vaginal bleeding
- Have/had certain types of cancer such as breast, uterine, or endometrial
- Had a stroke or heart attack
- Have/had blood clots
- Have/had liver disease
If you have any of these risk factors, your doctor may want to consider a different solution for you.
Belmar’s BHRT Medication Solutions
The following medication solutions currently fall within our BHRT formulary:
- Estradiol (E2)
- Estriol (E3)
Common Dosage Forms of BHRT
At Belmar, our expert pharmacists compound bioidentical hormones in a variety of dosage forms to suit specific conditions and individual patient preferences. These include:
- Oral Tablets
- Sublingual Tablets
- Transdermal Cream
- Vaginal Cream
- Suppositories (Rectal or Vaginal)
- Vaginal Tablets
- Pellet Implants
- Topical Gel
Learn More About BHRT
When a man’s hormone levels are low, hormone replacement therapy may help relieve a wide array of different symptoms, both physical and emotional. BHRT may alleviate symptoms by treating the cause, not just the symptoms themselves.
When a woman’s hormones are out of balance, hormone replacement therapy may help relieve a wide array of different symptoms, both physical and emotional. BHRT may alleviate symptoms by treating the cause, not just the symptoms themselves.
Contact Belmar Pharma Solutions
If you’re a patient, we’re here to help you fill prescriptions or provide you the information you need to work with your doctor to help decide if a compounded prescription might be a good treatment for you.
Prescribers, for a complete formulary or access to our clinical resources fill out the form below and one of our Solutions Engineers will be in touch shortly. If you are new to compounding, you may also find our page on How to Write a Compounding Prescription helpful.
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