Hormone Replacement Therapy

What is Menopause?

Menopause occurs when the ovaries steadily decline in the amount of estrogen they produce over time. This usually occurs in women in their 40s to 50s during which their menstrual periods come to an end.

Menopause occurs gradually over several years and most women experience various symptoms including hot flashes, mood changes, night sweats, sleep problems, and vaginal dryness. These symptoms occur due to declining levels of estrogen in the body.

How do you treat the symptoms of menopause?

Since the symptoms of menopause can be very challenging to manage, treatment is often sought after. There are several options available including hormone replacement therapy (“HRT”), which means replacing estrogen (and progesterone) in the body as natural levels decline. HRT can be given several different ways including as a pill, estrogen patch and vaginal estrogen preparations.

Is Hormone Replacement Therapy right for you?

HRT is best suited for women in their 50s (between the age 50 – 59) who are undergoing menopause or who have just completed menopause. Some of the benefits of HRT include a decline in hot flashes, night sweats and vaginal dryness. Some studies also show HRT may have a positive effect on bone health and may reduce the risk of an osteoporotic fractures to some extent. There is also data to suggest that HRT may have mortality benefits to some extent in younger females who start HRT early on in menopause.

Is Hormone Replacement Therapy safe and effective?

The Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) was a study done to determine the benefits and potential risks with the use of HRT during menopause. The study found that although HRT is effective in treating the symptoms of menopause, there were an increased risk of heart attacks, breast cancer, blood clots and strokes in certain females who did take HRT.

Who should avoid Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Although HRT is effective in treating menopause, HRT should be avoided in women with a history of breast cancer, heart disease, blood clots, heart attacks, strokes and women who are at risk of developing these complications.

When to seek treatment?

If you are experiencing symptoms of menopause, you may benefit from visiting one of our Houston-area Endocrinologists here at the Endocrine Center to see what options you have available to you for treating your symptoms and to see if HRT is right for you. You can schedule an appointment through our website at www.endocrinecenter.com or by telephone at 713-973-3459.

-Dr. Mohammed Qureshi

You Might Also Enjoy...

The Many Signs of Parathyroid Disease

An overall feeling of malaise is difficult to describe and challenging to diagnose, but it’s one of the key symptoms of parathyroid disease. Here are some other signs you might suffer from this serious condition.

Unusual Hair Growth and Menopause: What's the Link?

A little peach fuzz on a woman’s skin adds softness to her complexion, but when it comes in darker and thicker and looks like it needs a shave, it may be hirsutism — and menopause may be the culprit. Here’s what you need to know.

4 Types of Adrenal Disease

Just above your kidneys, you have a couple of tiny adrenal glands that have a big job. The hormones they produce control several vital bodily functions, so when something goes awry, it can be serious. Here are the four major adrenal diseases.

What Causes Hypocalcemia?

You’ve heard all your life that it’s important to drink milk so you get your calcium, and you drank your fair share. But was it enough? Do you have hypocalcemia — low levels of calcium? Here, we explore the various culprits that rob you of calcium.

5 Tips for Combating High Cholesterol

You’ve heard it said that too much of a good thing can be bad, and it’s certainly true of cholesterol. Although your body needs some cholesterol to function properly, an excess can cause health problems. Here’s how to keep your cholesterol in check.