Hormone replacement therapy programs aren’t just for women only. Testosterone levels in men start to naturally decline in their late 20’s, but most men generally maintain adequate levels of testosterone into their mid 40’s and 50’s. However, some men (even in their 30’s) can have a testosterone deficiency and show signs of lowered sexual stamina and erectile dysfunction, muscle mass and bone loss, fatigue, depression, irritability, weight gain, gynecomastia (often known as “man boobs” or” moobs”), difficulty sleeping, urinary problems and memory loss. The result is andropause, also known as the “male menopause” or “manopause”.
Andropause can make your daily life feel like an exhausting uphill battle, and because men are living longer, and also want to have more active lives, the effects of hormone imbalance can seem even more severe, drastically affecting your quality of life. These symptoms can be improved with hormone therapy.
Bio-Identical hormones have the same chemical structures as the hormones secreted by your reproductive organs and adrenal glands. Our Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) program provides a customized hormone balance therapy based on an evaluation of patient-specific lab data and symptoms. We use several methods to administer BHRTs for a combination of rapid effect and sustained release treatments.
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- Why should I consider bio-identical hormones rather than synthetic ones?
Synthetic hormones are manufactured in pharmaceutical labs to resemble human hormones, but with alterations that make each one unique. Unfortunately, the alterations that make them unique – and patentable – can also make them a problem to take. With less than ideal RBA (receptor binding affinity), synthetics are an imperfect fit with normal cells and can often cause undesirable and potentially dangerous side effects.
Bio-identical hormones exactly match the molecular structure of human hormones. In other words, they are “bio” or “human-identical”, with a 100% RBA or affinity for binding to their individual receptor sites. This makes them not only effective, but also safe. Since they duplicate the identical structure and function of human hormones, the body recognizes them and knows exactly what to do with them.
We also customize your individual Bio-Identical Hormones, so we can usually achieve better symptom relief than you would have using the limited number of choices found in synthetic hormones.
- Where do Bio-Identical Hormones come from?
Bio-Identical Hormones are derived from the yam or soybean plant.
- Which Bio-Identical Hormones are used most frequently?
Men produce lower amounts of progesterone and estrogen than women, but their function in maintaining hormone balance in men is no less important.
There are three hormone production centers in men: the testes, adrenal glands and hypothalamus. The male hormones testosterone and DHEA, or androgens, are produced in the testes. DHEA is also produced by the adrenal glands. The fact that males have two DHEA production centers is the reason that this hormone level is about one-third higher in men than in women.
Testosterone, estradiol (estrogen), and progesterone are used most often, although we may prescribe others. Your symptoms, age and family history are very significant factors that will determine whether you should to use Bio-Identical Hormones or not.
- What is the best way to take Bio-Identical Hormones?
While we may use gels, creams and pills, we find that pellets placed under the skin in a quick and painless procedure is the best method to provide a constant, continuous level of hormone.
- Will Bio-Identical Hormones help reduce osteoporosis (loss of bone density)?
When dosed properly, Bio-Identical Hormones can help to treat osteoporosis.
- Will my insurance pay for Bio-Identical Hormones?
Some insurance companies provide coverage. While we don’t accept insurance payments, we will provide you with a receipt and information so you can submit a request for reimbursement to your insurance company.
- Do Bio-Identical Hormones have the same risk of breast cancer as other types of HRT?
Hormone levels will be taken and evaluated before therapy is started, and levels will be reevaluated during treatment. After the first year of therapy, hormone levels may be monitored less frequently.