The menace of menopause. Suzanne Somers describes it best in her bestseller “The Sexy Years”: itchy, bitchy, bloaty, sweaty, spacey, and all-dried up. In painstaking detail, she also describes how she beat every one of those symptoms – with bioidentical hormone therapy (BHRT).
Somewhere around the 40th birthday, our bodies begin to creep into perimenopause, which eventually leads to menopause – when menstruation stops and estrogen, testosterone progesterone, and DHEA levels drop dramatically. That’s when it may be time for a tweak.
Bioidentical hormone molecules have the identical shape, make-up, and structure of our body’s molecules. That’s why BHRT provides the perfect “keys” to unlock the receptor sites and correct those multi-hormone imbalances that can cause:
· low libido
· mood swings
· anxiety & depression
· weight gain & muscle loss
· a drop in bone density
· vaginal dryness
· breast tenderness
· thyroid dysfunction
· sugar cravings
But menopause is not solely a physical event – it’s the biggest chance to liberate and empower oneself since adolescence. So, stop dreading it, and embrace it with open arms.
We’ll show how, at RISE Medical. Our specialists have helped harmonize hormones and happiness for hundreds of mature patients who are now living the high life (with a revived love life).
Bioidentical means molecularly identical to the body’s natural hormones. Unlike synthetic hormone replacement, RISE BHRT therapy delivers hormones sourced from natural plants like yams, flax, and soybeans, which match human hormones molecule by molecule.
Why is this important? Molecules that match a specific body help alleviate risks and side effects that make synthetic chemical hormones problematic. Bioidentical hormones are:
Like a band leader prompts a band to march and play at different intervals, our glands must target our every tissue, organ, and body system to control growth, musculature, bone density, metabolism, emotional and sexual response by sending messages through these hormones:
Estrogen – It is known how the menopausal deficiency of this “female hormone” can cause hot flashes, mood swings, and vaginal dryness – but estrogen can also be too high, and the list of “female hormones” is longer than one would think.
Testosterone – levels are just as critical for women as they are for men. Why? Because testosterone – like the drummer in a marching band of 50 hormones – keeps the heartbeat, energy, muscle mass, and libido strong and vibrant. Signs of low testosterone are easy to spot, and a deficiency can cause dissonance with all other hormones.
Progesterone – the precursor to estrogen and testosterone also supports normal thyroid function. It can affect breast health, cardiovascular health, and nervous system health. Supplementation can ease anxiety, enhance memory, boost brain function, and optimize sexual pleasure. A normal balance of progesterone also acts as a mood stabilizer.
DHEA – hormone supports libido much like testosterone does. It also helps build bone mass, lower cholesterol and triglycerides levels, improve well-being, and increase alertness. Like sex partners, our sex hormones must perform together, in tune, on pitch, to just the right degree for sex and health to be harmonious.
How can a woman accomplish this harmony? With her own biochemically unique combination, dose, and duration of the following delivery methods:
When estrogen, testosterone, thyroid hormones and cortisol are all out of whack, someone may experience hair loss. This immediate and often quickly developing condition may require a fast-acting injection of compounded hormones combined and tweaked precisely for their unique imbalance.
The internet may be full of ads for bottles containing powerful hormone cures but, the question is: for which imbalance? Since every woman’s imbalance, general health, exercise regimen, and genetic predisposition is unique, an individual’s levels must be thoroughly tested before our RISE specialists can diagnose and prescribe a specific type and number of micronized oral supplements. Precision and safety are key to successful hormone rebalancing.
Soy and flax contain plant-based estrogens (phytoestrogens) that are adaptogenic – they are easily converted into a form the body can use. To reap the beneficial effects of bioidentical progesterone for our patients, we only prescribe creams, lotions, and gels that have the United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) compliant progesterone – this is the active ingredient added to wild yam-based products as well.
How much of each hormone is needed and for how long? Every woman’s sex organ functions require a different balance of estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, and DHEA– and that perfect balance may be different for each individual, depending on her age, general health, genetics, diet, lifestyle and environmental factors.
That’s why balancing testosterone levels and other hormones at RISE Medical is a highly customized procedure. Our hormone experts tune in to each person’s unique, often subtle, requirements before beginning it.
Laboratory testing is the only way to determine whether BHRT is needed. To assess base hormone levels, we will order specific lab panels. During the initial exam, the Rise Medical healthcare provider will discuss medical history, diet, lifestyle. Make sure to tell your practitioner if you take any medications, as they may affect your results.
A genital exam may help diagnose or rule out any possible underlying medical conditions that could be causing the symptoms. Then the provider will decide to do one of the following:
A RISE hormone specialist will insert a needle into the vein, withdraw a blood sample, and send it to a lab for close analysis.
The blood test, however, is not always reliable in detecting all hormones. Why? Sex hormones in the bloodstream are 95-99% bound to carrier proteins, and in this form are unavailable to target tissues. A blood test may not detect them completely.
Saliva testing measures the amount of hormone available in the tissues the hormone is targeting – the bioavailable amount. That’s why saliva testing may better detect levels associated with the specific symptoms of hormone excess or deficiency. Saliva tests also help monitor hormone levels during hormone replacement therapy to help tweak them.
A growing body of evidence suggests that saliva tests can more accurately determine levels of testosterone and DHEA. This non-invasive sampling method requires patients to spit into a plastic tube and allows them to collect saliva at home at specific times to more accurately measure hormone levels.
The RISE practitioner may administer an FDA-approved urine test called the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) test. FSH manages the menstrual cycle and menopause.
After reviewing all lab results and determining a baseline of hormone levels, the specialist will determine whether BHRT is needed. Even if it’s determined that it is needed at the moment, lifestyle and environmental factors may alter this need over time, so we recommend routine testing – and that means coming to every scheduled appointment.
Defining a healthy hormone balance requires considering age, genetics, environmental conditions, other health factors and tolerance for the intensity of the symptoms. Hormone results are never static. They fluctuate throughout the week, even the day. Level testing provides a starting point which helps determine next steps. We’ll help interpret and act on the diagnosis using all of these tests to check progress – today and for the rest of the treatment cycle.
Following lab testing, the provider will review all of the results to determine if bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) is necessary, in some cases it may not be. However, lifestyle and environmental factors may change this need over time, so routine testing, along with a preventive health lifestyle is recommended to keep hormones balanced and maintain optimal health.