The physical effects of menopause can be overwhelming, even for women without any other health conditions and a healthy reproductive history. If you are approaching menopausal age and you have begun to experience severe hot flashes, heart palpitations, insomnia, and mood swings, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) may be a treatment that you consider. HRT is personalized to the needs of each individual woman, but it is a somewhat controversial therapy, because there are a number of possible side effects that can come with HRT. Work with your gynecologist to discuss your specific needs and treatment options to find relief from menopause symptoms while minimizing the risks.
What are the benefits of HRT?
As the body's hormone production slows, symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, reduced sex drive, and mood changes can become highly disruptive in your daily life. Additionally, menopause may spike other health risks like osteoporosis, high cholesterol, and sexual health disorders. When used correctly, HRT will reduce these risks and help manage symptoms for an easier transition into the next stage of life.
What are the risks?
Women who have conditions such as blood clots, liver disease, heart disease, or breast cancer are not candidates for HRT, because hormone therapy can have a negative impact on these conditions. Hormone therapy can also make the breast tissue look denser on mammograms, making the results of the exam more difficult to read. In addition, risks vary depending on the types of hormones used—progesterone, estrogen, or a combination of the two.
How long does HRT last?
There are different types of HRT, which will have varying timeframes. Your gynecologist will work closely with you to prescribe the lowest possible dose of hormones for the shortest length of time to optimize the benefits of treatment while keeping side effects to a minimum.
Desert West OBGYN can provide the personalized peri-menopause and menopause care you need to stay healthy and well in Glendale, Peoria, Estrella, and Anthem. You can contact us for appointments or more details about our women's health services by calling (602) 978-1500. From fertility care to hormone replacement therapy, we can provide the exceptional care you need to manage your health in every stage of life.