Last night was our very first presentation on bioidentical hormone replacement therapy. Is it any surprise that the room was packed?
Literally every seat in the room was full!
Our health and wellness- both mental and physical- is directly related to our hormones and how they interract within our body. When our hormones are not optimal, we can experience stress, fatigue, weight gain, infertility, depression, and more. There are various factors which can cause this, including age, menopause, surgical menopause, diet, lifestyle, or other imbalances.
Many people experience chronic fatigue, frequent headaches, and depression, yet these symptoms are attributed to simply, Life...Life with a career, life with a partner, life with kids, life that is busy and with responsibility. The reality is though, these are in fact SYMPTOMS, telling us that there is an underlying issue which is causing the body to function sub-optimally. Frequent headaches, fatigue, mental fogginess, problems with sleeping, and depression...these are not, or shouldn't be considered, normal. From a functional medicine perspective, we look at diet, lifestyle, and deficiencies that may be present, including hormones. Often times deficiencies are found, sometimes a patient may look "normal" on paper, but their symptoms or quality of life tells otherwise. Cue- bioidentical hormone therapy...
Bioidentical hormones and "natural" hormones are not the same. When we refer to bioidentical hormones, we are referring to hormones that are identical in molecular structure to the hormones we make in our bodies. They're not found in this form in nature but are made from a plant chemical extracted from yams and/or soy.
Horse urine may be "natural," but the prescription estrogen medication Premarin made from it is not bioidentical to human estrogen [Premarin = "Pregnant" "Mare" "Urine"] The same goes for Cenestin, which is made from plants (i.e. "natural"), but is not bio or human-identical.
Integrated Women's Wellness & Center for Birth offers bioidentical hormone replacement therapy with what is called pellet therapy. Pellet therapy is a safe and effective way to administer specific hormones (tailored to the individual patient's needs), via a small pellet that slowly releases hormone. Pellet therapy has been around since the early part of the 1900s and has been extensively studied in the US and abroad.
There is no doubt that pellet therapy is a safe way to deliver hormones. But what is meant by ‘bioidentical?’ Bioidentical can be better referred to as ‘human identical’ or hormones as they are found in the body. Testosterone that looks exactly like testosterone, without any added compounds. It is those added compounds that makes it difficult for the body to handle.
We chose to specifically use BioTE pellet therapy and are excited to be the first BioTE pellet therapy office in the Valley! This opens a whole new option for women (and men) that have been struggling with hormone related symptoms, especially if you have been one of those patients that have gone to the doctor and been told that your labs look ‘normal’ but yet you don’t feel ‘normal.’
In an age where traditional physicians are one-trick ponies with a prescription pad as their singular trick, and with patients being again and again prescribed one medication after the other to mask symptoms rather than address the core issues, we need to move on to a more thoughtful, critical analysis, root-cause-analysis, individualized care.
Functional medicine is that.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is one of many, many tools.