What does “Bio-Identical” mean?
The term “Bio-Identical” refers to the chemical structure of the hormones used in the treatment. Essentially, it means that the molecular structure of the hormones used in BHRT contains the same compounds as Hormone Replacement Therapy, and therefore, elicit similar results.
While the molecular structure of these two treatment options is identical, the manner in which they are produced is different. Typically, Hormone Replacement Therapy utilizes hormones that have been synthesized in a lab, while Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy only uses compounds that exist naturally in plants or animals. It is important to distinguish that even Bio-Identical Hormones are typically compounded in pharmacies for specific dosages that fit a patient’s needs. However, this does not mean that they are being synthesized. It simply means that pharmacies are taking naturally occurring hormones and “packaging” them into dosages that yield optimum results. These dosages can be compounded into two main forms: pellets and creams.
How can BHRT be administered?
Pellets are administered subcutaneously using a procedure called a BHRT insert. Essentially, a very small incision (comparable to the width of the tip of a pencil, and about 2-3 inches in length) is made on either the left or right buttock. Once the pellets are inserted, the incision is sterilized and bandage for 2-3 days. Over the next 7-10 days, your body will begin to metabolize the pellets and your symptoms will begin to improve. Typically, pellet inserts are done every 6-9 weeks for males, and every 10-12 weeks for females.
Creams are compounded by a pharmacy, and self applied 2-3 times per day on each of the arms. Typically the creams are prescribed in 60 day increments so the provider can track the overall progress of the patient and how they respond to the prescribed dose.
What can I expect the pellet insertion process to be like?
Our bodies, male and female, require a specific balance between 3 primary hormones: testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. This balance can be interrupted by a wide variety of factors and demographics including age, stress level, diet, metabolic range, and physical activity.
When our testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone levels begin to deviate from our optimum levels, we begin to exhibit symptoms such as extreme fatigue, libido, mood swings, sleeping trouble, chronic headaches, and even inexplicable fluctuations in weight. Modern Concepts provides Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy to address these symptoms at their source.
In today’s world, we have to be incredibly aware of what we put in our body. Whether it’s the foods we eat, the beverages we drink, or the medications we take for other health concerns, it has become increasingly difficult to avoid exposing ourselves to synthetic substances. Using the Bio-Identical approach to Hormone Therapy, Modern Concepts avoids synthetic hormones and uses a more patient-friendly alternative.
The term “bio-identical” refers to naturally existing versions of testosterone and estrogen that share 98% of their structure with the hormones humans produce naturally. Ultimately, this leads to a much smoother and less-invasive process which provides a better overall experience for our patients.
Another benefit of the Bio-Identical approach is in the longevity and gradual process of the therapy. Not only are synthetic hormones more invasive and potentially harmful, but they also leave the patient vulnerable to “crashes” and a rapid return of symptoms. One day you’re on top of the world, the next all of your symptoms have returned with out a warning.
Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy gives your body a reserve of testosterone and estrogen to gradually pull from over the course of 8-12 weeks. Males typically require pellet inserts every 6-8 weeks while females typically require inserts every 10-12 weeks. The patient-friendly hormones are sent to our practice in the form of “pellets” which are inserted in to the glute using a very safe a non-invasive procedure.
After the procedure, it typically takes 7-10 days for the patient to experience a noticeable change in mood, energy levels, sex drive, and ability to sleep. Once your body has metabolized the pellets over the course of 8-12 weeks, the original symptoms will return in a very safe and gradual manner which means: it’s time for another insert!
For your convenience, we have uploaded our Hormone Therapy Symptom Questionnaire below so you can see what symptoms are consistent with hormone imbalances. Please feel free to contact us and schedule your free consultation with our Nurse Practitioner and Registered Nurse to find out if Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy might be right for you!