When is Hormone Replacement Therapy the Best Solution for Menopause Symptoms?

At the end of a woman’s reproductive life, falling levels of estrogen can cause a number of symptoms, including hot flashes and vaginal atrophy. One way to get relief from these menopausal symptoms is with hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

The doctors, nurse practitioners (NP), and Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNM), at Women’s Health Care Center, PLLC in Helena, Montana, are experts at providing HRT. Read on to see what HRT involves and whether or not you may be a candidate.

Body conditions at menopause

As well as serving as the storeroom for your eggs, your ovaries are the primary manufacturer of estrogen, the essential female hormone. When ovaries stop producing eggs, they also stop producing estrogen, since the functions needed to support reproduction are no longer necessary.

However, many of your body’s systems still rely on estrogen, so when estrogen production decreases, this can lead to many symptoms. In some women, these symptoms can be minimal, but in others, these symptoms can be severe.

Symptoms can include hot flashes and genitourinary syndrome of menopause (GSM). The term GSM is used to describe vaginal atrophy and its accompanying symptoms, which can include vaginal dryness, urinary incontinence, and painful intercourse.

The effectiveness of HRT

When it comes to treating menopause symptoms, taking supplemental hormones is the most effective way to reduce symptoms. Since the combination and extent of symptoms can vary among women, treatment can as well.

For instance, a woman who is primarily experiencing vaginal dryness may be prescribed a low-dose topical cream containing estrogen for the affected area. While someone who is suffering from severe hot flashes may be prescribed a high-dose estrogen pill.

When HRT is not recommended

There are some cases where HRT may not be recommended. Typically, women may be advised to avoid HRT if they have any of the following conditions:

Side effects of HRT

Any medication has the potential for creating side effects, and HRT is no different. If side effects exceed the symptoms being treated, you may need to find an alternative. Side effects can include:

The best way to safely navigate the symptoms of menopause is by partnering with the experienced doctors, NPs, and CNMs at Women’s Health Care Center, PLLC. They can give you a thorough exam and let you know if you’re a candidate. To learn more, book an appointment online or over the phone today.

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