Hormone Replacement Therapy-The Types
Hormone replacement therapy, also known as menopausal hormone therapy, hormone therapy or estrogen replacement therapy, uses female hormones estrogen and progesterone to treat common menopause and aging symptoms. Doctors prescribe the treatment during or after menopause.
After your periods have stopped, the level of your hormones decreases, causing uncomfortable symptoms like hot flashes and vaginal dryness, and sometimes conditions like osteoporosis. The HRT replaces the hormones that your body is no longer capable of making. It is the most effective treatment or menopausal symptoms.
Why the Body Needs Estrogen
When you think of estrogen, most likely you think about pregnancy. Estrogen plays an important role or preparing the uterus to receive the fertilized egg in women of child-bearing age. Estrogen has other uses in the body too, as it helps in raising the levels of good cholesterol, and also controls the manner in which your body utilizes calcium which is used to strengthen bone.
When Should You Take Progesterone
If you have your womb, it is not advisable to take estrogen without progesterone as it grows your cancer of the endometrium risk. Since the cells from the uterus lining are not leaving your body during the menstruation any more, they may build up in your uterus and lead to cancer. The work of progesterone is reducing that risk by thickening the lining.
The Types of Hormone Replacement Therapy
Estrogen Therapy: Doctors suggest a low dose of estrogen for women who have undergone hysterectomy. Estrogen is presented in different forms, but the most popular ones are the pill and the patch, but there is still the vaginal ring, spray or gel.
It is often referred to a combination therapy since it combines doses of estrogen and progestin, the synthetic form of progesterone. This treatment method is meant for women who still have their uterus.
The ideal candidates for HRT are those experiencing mild to severe menopausal symptoms and those with a family history of osteoporosis.On the contrary, those with breast cancer, liver disease, heart disease, or a history of blood clots as well as those without menopausal symptoms should not go for the HRT.
Hormone Replacement Therapy Regimes
Different treatment regimes of hormone replacement therapy are available depending on whether you are in the early stages of menopause or you have had the menopausal symptoms for some time. The two most common types are the cyclical HRT and the continuous HRT.
The cyclical or sequential therapy is meant for women using the combined HRT and have the menopausal symptoms but are still having their periods. Cyclical HRT is of two types; the Monthly HRT for women with regular periods and the three-monthly HRT for irregular periods.
Continuous combined HRT is for women who are post-menopausal meaning that they haven’t had their period for a year. It involves taking estrogen and progesterone every day without a break.