What is Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) is common term for the treatment of conditions caused by the effects of hormone deficiencies resulting from menopause. BHRT uses hormones that are identical in their mollecular structure to the hormones produced naturally within the human body.
BHRT is also used more generally to describe the practice of using only bioidentical hormones in the treatment of all hormone deficiencies, not just menopause. These include perimenopause, which is the time of change leading into menopause, and andropause in men.
Hormones regulate the activity of cells and tissues in the body. Optimized and balanced hormones are essential to good health and a feeling of well-being. In both men and women, hormones decrease with age causing a wide range of symptoms such as fatigue, weight gain, loss of sex drive depression and disrupted sleep patterns (insomnia). The hormones estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, thyroid and cortisol all play a very serious role in daily life and health and an imbalance can impact life dramatically.
Many people resign themselves to living with the serious symptoms caused by hormone imbalance, accepting them as an unchangeable and an untreatable part of the aging process. However, maintaining optimum levels of hormones promotes an improved quality of life and prevents many of the degenerative illnesses commonly associated with aging.
Bioidentical Hormones are exactly identical in molecular structure and function to the hormones which are made in the body. Bioidentical Hormones are derived from plants, such as yam or soy and are chemically and functionally identical to human hormones. Bioidentical Hormones produce the same responses in the body as hormones made by the body without increased risk of allergic reaction and sensitivities.
Quinpool Wellness Centre’s approach is to individualize treatment plans for each patient based on medical history, physical examination, symptoms and laboratory analysis. The prescription is tailored to the exact amount of each hormone needed for the individual’s balance. Each individualized treatement plan focuses on Bioidentical Hormone restoration and optimization.
The first step is to treat the causes of hormone imbalance when possible. Providing your body with the elements needed to make its own hormones is fundamental. The next step is to supplement with bioidentical hormones to restore deficient hormones.
Do women and men need bioidentical hormone replacement (BHRT) for life?
Humans are a unique species when it comes to the fact that we live much of our lives outside our reproductive years. Most animals in the wild do not live beyond their ability to reproduce – many don’t even live beyond puberty. Our increased life expectancy is relatively recent – only women and men in the past couple of generations have a life expectancy beyond 50 years. There is certainly much controversy about whether or not it’s appropriate to restore hormones to youthful levels as people age.
There are two main perspectives when it comes to hormone replacement: use the lowest dosage for the shortest time possible only to treat symptoms, or use individualized dosages for longer periods of time to maintain youthfulness and prevent diseases of aging. Both perspectives require proper evaluation of your specific risks, as well as appropriate follow-up.
Our treatment protocol for symptoms of menopause and perimenopause includes an initial consultation, and may include vitamins & supplements, lifestyle counselling, diet, and compounded Bio-Identical Hormones.