What are bioidentical hormones?
These hormones are chemically identical as those that the body secrets. Albeit, they are formulated in a lab, bioidentical hormone tends to mimic the hormones which are naturally secreted by a human body. In turn, the body is unable to differentiate between the natural ones and bioidentical ones. The latter is formulated from a number of sources that span plant and animal products. They entail:
- 17 beta-estradiols, which include Estrace, Estradiol, and Estring
- Estradiol acetate, which includes Femring
- estradiol hemihydrate, including Vagifem
- Micronized progesterone USP, like Prometrium and Prochieve
Difference between bioidentical hormones and synthetic hormones
The former has exact chemical and molecular structure like the human body secrets and the latter is formulated differently than the human body hormones. In other words, the body reacts to them. For instance, Premarin is a replacement estrogen made from the urine of pregnant horses. It makes the human body reactive when bound to the estrogen receptors tightly. This hormone also increases the person’s chances of being diagnosed with cancer if this med is taken for a long time.
Bioidentical hormones are used to alleviate the symptoms of menopause in women and also resulting in benefits like
- reduced fatigue
- increased sex drive
- less hair thinning
- reduced hot flashes
- less dry skin
- improved sleep
- reduced bloating
- better thinking and memory
The bioidentical hormones are available in the form of creams, injections, gels, lotions and tablets. Using bioidentical hormones help in restoring the natural hormones that younger women have. The doctor will check the hormone levels of a woman typically by sampling saliva or blood. This will determine what types of hormones the woman’s body needs. During the treatment, she will have her hormonal levels tested several times to check for balance.
These hormones are custom made into a spray, pill, cream or suppository form by a compounding pharmacy. These hormones are mixed in a special combination for each woman. These hormones are made with an advantage without having certain allergens. But, compounded hormones aren’t regulated by the FDA and the efficacy hasn’t been proven in the long run.
- increased risk for blood clots
- gallbladder disease
- skin changes
- mood swings
- vision changes
- heart disease or breast cancer