Hormone Replacement Therapy is the correction of the BALANCE of the hormones in your body at this point in time.
Hormone replacement is the latest field of anti-ageing medicine and is gaining worldwide momentum.
What are Hormones?
They are the most powerful molecules in the body. They control
Cell growth, development, protein synthesis & metabolic rate
OPTIMUM levels are essential for quality of life, good health and disease prevention. We will look at specific OPTIMAL ranges for your sex and age rather than looking at ‘normal’ for sex ranges which can be large and therefore not very helpful in controlling symptoms. Hormone replacement is individualised diagnosis of hormone imbalance with treatment to RESTORE perfect levels for you as an individual.
Between the ages of 20-30, sex hormone levels are stable. After 35, there is a gradual decline and it is very common, for example to see low progesterone levels in women 15 years before the menopause.
These sex hormones include-
- DHEA- commonest sex hormone (increases with stress, an androgen that helps to balance cortisol)
- Testosterone- also very important for women
They are made from cholesterol.
What is the difference between ‘conventional’ hormone prescriptions and bio-identical hormones?
Bio-identical hormones are SYNTHETIC structures that are identical to human hormones. ‘Conventional’ BODY IDENTICAL hormones in HRT are naturally occurring or synthetic and these are the kind mainly used by this clinic as they are endorsed by the British Menopause Society.
When are they used?
We can use hormones for men (andropause) and women (menopause and perimenopause)
At what age might I need this?
As mentioned earlier, patients present most commonly from the age of about 35. It may be earlier in some. Some women experience Premature Ovarian Insufficiency (POI) at a much younger age.
What symptoms might I notice?
Andropause (from mid 30’s, usually very gradual)
- increased body fat (including fat around internal organs which is bad for cardiovascular health)
- reduced muscle
- increased lethargy
- reduced sex drive (libido)
- impaired memory
- low mood & depression
- reduced sexual function, eg erectile dysfunction
- cardiovascular disease
Perimenopause / Menopause
Oestrogen deficiency causes many symptoms and a few include-
- hot flushes
- period problems / heavy periods
- vaginal dryness
- irritability, depression
- aches and pains
- memory problems, Alzheimer’s Disease
- wrinkles, dry skin
- poor cardiovascular health and cancer
Incorrect balance of oestrogen and progesterone may cause
- Anxiety, irritability, depression
- bloating and oedema
- breast cysts, fibroids, breast cancer, ovarian and uterine cancer
- thyroid dysfunction
- gallbladder disease
So what are the benefits?
Sex hormones as we have said are made from cholesterol and they then control our
- nervous system
- cardiovascular system
- Immune system
- Gastrointestinal system
- Skeletal and muscular systems
- Endocrine system
As a result of correcting imbalance in these hormones you can have
- reduced blood pressure and reduced incidence of heart disease
- ‘good cholesterol’ balance correction, (reducing the ‘bad’ LDL type)
- prevention of fat in the organs reducing cardiovascular risk
- improved sensitivity to insulin and reduced incidence of diabetes
- immune system response improvement
- improved skin, hair and muscles
- improved mood, brain function and health
- improved pain management
- improved response to insulin
- reduced miscarriage, increased fertility
- reduced risk prostate cancer as low levels are linked to this (prostate blood tests and prostate examination is advised at regular intervals)
- reduced loss of bone in spine and hip, increased BMD
Are there any side effects?
There can be effects of having too much or too little but there are no interactions and they are not toxic. There are only effects. A possible problem would be if the BALANCE of the prescription may not be quite right or delivered in a way that doesn’t suit you, tablet vs skin administration, for example. Sometimes we cannot get full resolution of symptoms with HRT alone but with the addition of lifestyle changes and good diet, an overall improvement is seen and improvements to lifestyle is strongly advocated by the clinic.
Isn’t HRT risky?
The consultation process includes assessment regarding risk and benefits of hormone replacement, for you as an individual.
Initial consultation £300 You will meet Dr Davis after you have completed a health questionnaire sent to you by email and returned in advance.
A full blood profile can be taken after this.
Women need to have a blood test around day 21 of the cycle ideally. All bloods in the morning and fasted if possible to do so.
Review appointment £200.
Ongoing prescriptions are then issued every 3 months once your hormones are balanced and an annual full blood profile is done to monitor your health.