Bio-identical Hormone Therapy is also known as Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) or Natural Hormone Therapy. Physicians and medical providers may prescribe this type of treatment to men and women to replace estrogen, testosterone, progesterone and other hormones in the body. This course of therapy may be delivered through creams, pellet therapy, patches or other methods to obtain outcomes such as: an increase of libido, increase of weight loss, improved memory and concentration, decrease of menopause, decrease of andropause, decrease in the risk of osteoporosis, and more.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) started as a treatment regimen in the 1930’s for menopausal relief throughout Europe and the United States. Since then, HRT has been developed and refined into different types of therapies, and commonly practiced as alternative medicine. The two main methods of replacement therapy available today are: synthetic hormone replacement and bioidentical hormone replacement.
Synthetic hormone replacement therapy utilizes hormone preparations that are made in approximation to the hormones found in the human body. They are usually produced from animal products in a laboratory. Synthetic hormones are commonly prescribed, though they have been known to increase the risk of breast cancer and heart disease.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy utilizes hormone preparations that are created to be “identical” or exact replicas of the hormones that your body produces naturally. They are also made in a laboratory, mostly from soy, yams and other plant extracts. Studies show that bioidentical hormones have few and minimal side effects and are safer and more effective than synthetic hormones. Most bioidentical hormones that are made by pharmaceutical companies and are sold in standard doses are approved by the FDA. However, bioidentical hormones that are “custom-made” at compounding pharmacies are not currently regulated by the FDA. Since the purpose of compounding “custom-made” hormones is to personalize a therapy, these preparations are not standardized and cannot be FDA regulated. This does not mean that compounding is bad; it just means that custom-compounded products do not bear the same warnings as other hormone therapies. The International Academy of Compounding Pharmacists suggests that patients seeking custom-compounded preparations check the Pharmaceutical Compounding Accreditation Board website to ensure adherence to very high levels of practice and quality control.
The International Menopause Society, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada, The Endocrine Society, the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), United States Food and Drug Administration, American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, American Medical Association, American Cancer Society and the Mayo Clinic have all released statements acknowledging the lack of studies illustrating the difference in benefits and risks between synthetic hormones and bioidentical hormones, and that compounded hormone preparations may carry additional risks that are not yet fully known.
Benefits of bioidentical hormone therapy may include:
- Reducing the risk of heart disease
- Increasing weight loss
- Enhancing sexual libido
- Improving memory and concentration
- Protecting against fibrocystic breasts
- Increasing energy and reducing depression
- Improving skin elasticity
- Encouraging bone growth
Stat RX Pharmacy can help you begin a bioidentical hormone therapy plan today. We carry a wide selection of bioidentical hormone preparations and can also custom compound hormone therapies for personalized needs. Our pharmacy staff is dedicated to helping integrate quality, cost-effective, specialty therapies into your life. Contact us today for more information.