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Do The Benefits Of Hormone Replacement Therapy Outweigh Any Risks?

MP900341699[1]There was a time when people thought that Hormone replacement Therapy (HRT) after menopause was a risk-free proposition. In fact, most of the doctors recommended HRT for every woman with menopause for the rest of her life. However, with the emergence of Women’s health initiative a lot of questions have been raised about the safety of using HRT and that was time when the women got scared. They were terrified of taking hormones. As a result they had suffered from severe hot flashes, mood swing and insomnia. Anxiety, depression, fatigue, body fat and muscle loss are however the frequent issues.

The truth was then discovered. A recent consensus statement published on behalf of Women’s health Societies and Seven International menopause deemed this therapy to be relatively safe in women under 60 years of age and within 10 years of menopause.  Since then studies examining the effects of hormone in women have had reassuring outcome. It showed that the risks of blood clot or breast cancer are pretty low especially for those who are in their 50’s. Here are some of the highlights of the research:

The use estrogen only hormone replacement can help in preventing coronary heart diseases

HRT can prevent osteoporosis-related fractures in women who are at a risk of enervating bone breaks

The combination of estrogen and progesterone for a maximum of five years is considered safe for women suffering from hot flashes and night sweats

However, the combination of estrogen and progesterone should be used with caution. The natural progesterone is the feel good hormone especially during the pregnancy and reduces inflammation. It also acts as a natural diuretic and helps to keep blood vessels dilated to ensure smooth flow of blood. Women can also get a bio identical version of progesterone by prescription. As for estrogen the doctors recommend to use estrogen in a transdermal form such as patch or gel. Also it can be used under the tongue. However, these routes help to avoid blood clots.

Even Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) can offer relief from hormone –related symptoms not only in women but also in men. However, BHRT is recommended for those individuals for whom lifestyle and nutritional adjustments had failed to yield sufficient relief for the severe symptoms. For men, BHRT help to balance the testosterone level in the body that is usually related with hormonal imbalance- a condition known as andropause.

A recent study has also revealed the intake of vitamin D and calcium with the therapy is beneficial to strengthen the bone. It was observed that calcium supplements and calcium increased the risk of kidney stones, cardiovascular diseases in post-menopausal women due to the increased level of mineral deposits from the supplements. These caused a hardening of the arteries. However, calcium derived from natural sources such as milk, kale and cheese do not pose the similar risks. It was concluded that calcium and vitamin D supplements coupled with hormones can significantly reduce the risk of weakening of bones in woman suffering from menopause.

However, who should avoid HRT? Women who are at a higher risk of suffering from harmful effects associated with hormone use should stay away from the use of HRT. These include women who have a history of breast cancer, stroke, blood clots and heart disease.  Also women who are obese and have diabetes should strictly avoid HRT as that may put them at a higher risk of heart disease.

Hormone therapy can offer relief from the life changing symptoms that typically occur with hormonal imbalance. So, if your quality of life is disturbed by hormonal symptoms, doctors are suggesting HRT as it can restore the natural balance you need in both your body and mind.

Author Bio: Stuart Parker is a health consultant and a wellness expert. He writes for many online publications where he covers topics like cosmetic procedures, wellness regimen, weight management and many more. Stuart runs a small clinic at his residence which is a family-owned business.

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