Hormones play an important role in your overall health at every stage of life. These chemical messengers support many complex functions in our bodies. You feel your best when they’re in balance and working together, but sometimes they become unbalanced, resulting in uncomfortable symptoms. Bio-identical hormones are identical to those we produce in our bodies. They are made from natural compounds in plants (usually soy or yam) and processed into a structure identical to the hormones our body produces.
What is the difference between BHRT and commercial hormones on the market?
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) is preferred by many and is a natural nad safe drug treatment that is utilized for treating hormone imbalances in women and men as they age. The hormones in BHRT are identical or "mirror" the bio identity of hormones in our human body. When you use bioidentical hormones, the cells of your body recognize them as familiar and know how to put them to best use. BHRT hormones are safe for patients as they fit perfectly into the hormone receptor “locks” of the cells in the body where they do their work. The hormones are produced from plants ( a plant molecule called “diosgenin”, that is found in wild yams). This specific molecule does not trigger any of the negative side effects associated with synthetic hormones.
What is the difference between BHRT vs HRT?
There are many mass-produced hormone replacement therapies (HRT) on the market today, however, a one-size-fits all approach doesn’t work for everyone. Hormones used in commercial HRT are derived from horse urine, whereas hormones used at Telestar Pharmacy for compounded BHRT are derived from yam or soy.
Who does BHRT help
Anyone experiencing symptoms due to low hormone levels may benefit from BHRT. Patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding, have a current or past history of breast cancer, coronary heart disease, a previous blood clot, heart attack, or stroke should talk to their doctor and likely avoid BHRT.
What hormones are used?
The hormones used in BHRT is dependent person-to-person, but the most common hormones used in bioidentical products are estradiol, estrone, estriol, progesterone, testosterone, and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). BHRT is available in pills, creams, and suppositories.
Women and BHRT:
Estrogen and progesterone are most commonly used hormones in female BHRT. Progesterone prevents abnormal thickening of the lining of your uterus. If you have had a hysterectomy, you will be offered estrogen only. BHRT preparations can combine 2-3 forms of estrogen:
- Estradiol (E2) is the most active form of estrogen, but is typically the least plentiful in postmenopausal women.
- Estrone (E1) is the second most potent form, and in postmenopausal women E1 is necessary for the production of E2, therefore estrone levels are typically higher.
- Estriol (E3) is the least potent form.
For low sex drives post-menopause, testosterone may be added (which improves sex drive for both men and women). DHEA, a natural steroid precursor, or cortisol, a natural human steroid, may be added to improve inflammation, weight loss, stress and improve sense of well-being. Women commonly use BHRT to help reduce symptoms of menopause (hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness) and helps improve bone strength, cholesterol, sex drive, memory, mood, and sleep.
Men and BHRT:
Testosterone is responsible for normal growth, development of male sex organs, hair distribution, vocal changes, and alterations in body musculature and fat distribution. Low testosterone affects your energy, mood, sex drive and ambition. Benefits include improved sex drive, sexual performance, energy, lean muscle, collagen production to boost skin firmness, mood, memory, and reduced body fat.
At Telestar Pharmacy we offer customized medications not available through commercial products. Compounded BHRT therapy is personalized for each unique patient. Patients may need a compounded topical preparation if they are having a skin rash from a commercial patch. Or they may need a medication in a different strength, combination or base than is commercially available. Each dose can be tweaked based on side effects and hormone.
There are other significant benefits about the customized BHRT compounds we prepare, including our ability to make different dosage forms, such as sublingual, vaginal, oral, and topical. We are confident in our ability to combine products in these various dosage forms. We can combine estriol and estradiol, as well as progesterone in various strengths. We can also include DHEA and/or testosterone in the compounds. This is also most cost effective for the patient because once the dose is stabilized we can combine all the hormones into one dosage form.