After the results of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) in 2002, bio identical hormones became more popular with women seeking alternative treatments for their menopausal related symptoms.
The WHI was and still is a hotly debated study which tested Premarin and Prempro, congugated equine (horse) estrogens and medroxy-progesterone acetate (MPA). The study showed users of the medicines had an increased risk of breast cancer, stroke, heart attacks and blood clots when compared to those women who took the placebo. However, the women had less hip fractures, colon cancer and hot flashes. After the study results were published, millions of women stopped their medications and sought alternatives.
Bio-identical Hormone therapy is a type of therapy in which the healthcare provider prescribes “bio-identical” hormones as opposed to non bio-identical hormones, such as premarin and prempro. In other words, the bio-identical hormones are made to mimic the hormones made by the female body. The prescription dosages are based on very specific blood tests.
Specifically, providers will generally order the following blood tests:
- Estrogen (estradiol, estrone or estriol)
- Testosterone (Total and Free)
Depending on the blood test results, a customized prescription is given to the patient with the required hormones in varying concentrations. Depending on the prescription written, a compounding pharmacy may be recommended. Innovative Compounding Pharmacy is located in Murrieta.
When this is done, many women feel an increased sense of wellness, energy and overall improvement. These tests are recommended for women who are in menopause. Occasionally, women who are perimenopausal may be given a trial of progesterone if they have having perimenopausal related symptoms.
Bio-Identical Hormones for Men?
Some men may also benefit from testosterone replacement if their testosterone levels are low. Low levels of testosterone are associated with increased risk of osteoporosis, heart disease and erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. Some studies have shown men with ED respond better to medicines like Viagra when testosterone levels are in the optimal range. Ask your physician if a testosterone test is right for you.
Dr. R. Eric Madrid of Rancho Family Medical Group in Menifee, Ca is a provider in Southwest Riverside County who prescribes and monitors bio-identical hormones. Rancho Family Medical Group accepts HMO and PPO insurances. For more information, visit their website at www.RanchoFamilyMed.com or call their office at 951-676-4193.