How Will I Know That My Hormone Therapy Is Working
Doctors cannot predict how long hormone therapy will be effective in suppressing the growth of any individual mans prostate cancer. Therefore, men who take hormone therapy for more than a few months are regularly tested to determine the level of PSA in their blood. An increase in PSA level may indicate that a mans cancer has started growing again. A PSA level that continues to increase while hormone therapy is successfully keeping androgen levels extremely low is an indicator that a mans prostate cancer has become resistant to the hormone therapy that is currently being used.
How Does Hormone Therapy Work
About 2 out of 3 breast cancers are hormone receptor-positive. Their cells have receptors for estrogen and/or progesterone which help the cancer cells grow and spread.
There are several types of hormone therapy for breast cancer. Most types of hormone therapy either lower estrogen levels in the body or stop estrogen from helping breast cancer cells grow.
Are You Looking For A Clinic That Specializes In Hormone Replacement Therapy For Menopause Near Gilbert Arizona
Atlas Health Medical Group in Gilbert, Arizona specializes in providing Bio-identical Hormone Therapy for Men and Women in Arizonas East Valley including Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, San Tan and Queen Creek. For women, BHRT offers an opportunity to support the transition into menopause, to alleviate symptoms and reach a healthy balance. As you may know, symptoms begin to manifest themselves in women by their late 40s, early 50s leading women into a new stage of their lives, peri-menopause. This stage typically lasts about 4 years and may be accompanied by a variety of symptoms that can be quite disruptive to their busy lives. Many women may experience menopausal symptoms for the rest of their lives, this is commonly due to adrenal and thyroid insufficiencies. BHRT replaces the missing hormones improving the incidence of menopausal symptoms, reducing the risk of bone loss, and reducing the risk of certain cancers. We pride ourselves on setting the standards of patient care and results-driven treatments. Our patients return to health and live the life they intended. Contact us today for your first appointment!
Don’t Miss: How Much Does Estrogen Cost For Transgender
Managing Hrt Side Effects
Ultimately, the choice to get hormone therapy is a decision that relies on you. Some postmenopausal women would rather experience the symptoms of menopause over the unpleasant HRT side effects, while others would prefer to take a chance on HRT than suffer through menopause. What matters most is if the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. The benefits still outweigh the risks if youre healthy and you:
- Have moderate to severe vasomotor symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats, which can be treated with systemic HRT
- Suffer from vaginal symptoms of menopause like dryness, itching, burning, or discomfort during intercourse
- Need to prevent bone loss or fractures caused by weakened bone density
- Experienced early menopause or premature menopause that led to estrogen deficiency
The side-effects of hormone therapy are often short-lived they are only bothersome when you start HRT, switch up your HRT method, or switch to a different hormone as your body tries to get used to the hormones. And despite the risks of hormone therapy, it can also protect you from osteoporosis, diabetes, and colorectal cancer — so it should still be considered as a treatment option. Here are some tips on how to deal with HRT side effects:
1) Wait at least three months before making changes to your prescription: The side effects could disappear or become less severe during that time, as your body adjusts to new hormone levels.
Feminizing Hormone Therapy And Fertility
Gender-affirming hormone replacement therapy may affect your fertility, as it impacts sperm production. While some transgender women can produce sperm again after stopping hormone treatment, research indicates that this may not be the case universally, and there is a risk of permanent infertility with long-term use of hormones. If you would like to have biological children, ask your doctor about your options with freezing your sperm before starting hormones.
Read Also: Can Dogs Be Given Melatonin
Feeling Under The Weather Heres 3 Easy Ways To Alleviate Any Side Effects
- Taking an oral hormone treatment? Taking your daily dose with food can help cut down on indigestion and nausea.
- Suffering from breast tenderness? A low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet can help alleviate your discomfort.
- Legs cramping? Regular exercise and stretching may lessen their occurrence.
Do YOU have imbalanced hormones?
Ways To Quit Hormone Replacement Therapy
There is no best way to stop HRT. “If you’re on a low dose, you may be able to go cold turkey,” Chang says. But in general, she and Schiff prefer that women taper off hormones slowly. You can do this by:
- Lowering the dosage
- Taking fewer pills per week
Work with your doctor to find the best plan for you.
Don’t Miss: How To Balance Your Estrogen Levels
How Should This Medicine Be Used
Hormone replacement therapy comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day. To help you remember to take hormone replacement therapy, take it around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take this medication exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without talking to your doctor.
Activella, FemHrt, and Prempro come as tablets containing estrogen and progestin. Take one tablet every day.
Ortho-Prefest comes in a blister card containing 30 tablets. Take one pink tablet once daily for 3 days, then take one white tablet once daily for 3 days. Repeat this process until you finish all the tablets on the card. Begin a new blister card the day after you finish the last one.
Premphase comes in a dispenser containing 28 tablets. Take one maroon tablet once daily on days 1 to 14, and take one light-blue tablet once daily on days 15 to 28. Begin a new dispenser the day after you finish the last one.
Before taking hormone replacement therapy, ask your pharmacist or doctor for a copy of the manufacturer’s information for the patient and read it carefully.
Low Levels Of Testosterone Effects In Men
Low T in men is nothing short of a public health crisis. Recent studies show alarmingly high rates of testosterone deficiencies, increasingly among younger men. Testosterone levels tend to decline with age. Although many may dismiss this tendency as a natural component of aging, there is actually no biological law of nature that indicates that testosterone levels must necessarily drop as we age.
Instead, testosterone loss occurs due to a number of genetic and lifestyle factors such as:
- Metabolic dysfunction .
- Inactivity .
- Loss of bone density .
- Loss in muscle mass.
Recommended Reading: How Much Is Melatonin At Walgreens
Hormone Replacement Therapy Disadvantages
Here are some side effects that result from estrogen and progestogen HRT.
Side effects of estrogen
If youre given estrogen-only HRT, you may experience the following side effects of the hormone estrogen:
1. Blood clots
Hormone replacement therapy tablets are associated with a risk of blood clots in the veins. Some underlying conditions, such as a family history of clotting or obesity, can put you at a high risk of blood clots. In such cases, your doctor may give you HRT patches or gels instead of tablets.
2. Heart disease and stroke
If youre over 60 years old, having HRT tablets can increase your risk of stroke and heart disease. The risk of developing these conditions is very low if youre below 60 years of age.
If you’re already at risk of heart disease, your doctor may prescribe HRT patches or gels. These forms of HRT are not associated with the risk of stroke or heart problems.
Studies show that estrogen-only HRT doesnt affect the risk of developing breast cancer. But combined HRT with estrogen and progestogen may increase the risk of breast cancer.
If you take estrogen and progestogen HRT for a long time, it can further increase breast cancer risk. However, the risk decreases once you stop taking HRT.
Because of this risk, its important to go for breast cancer screenings if you’re on HRT.
5. Womb or uterine cancer
Estrogen-only HRT increases womb or uterine cancer risk. If your treatment goes on for a long period of time, the risk may increase.
What Are The Side Effects Of Stopping Hormone Replacement Therapy
Written by Elite HRT on April 15, 2021
Camille Freking, Regulatory Affairs Specialist, MEDICAL ADVISOR
Not everyone will be on hormone replacement therapy for the rest of their lives after they start it. So, when its time to stop, you should know what to expect.
It is common to focus on what it is like to start hormone therapy but you really should look at the whole process so you know exactly what you are getting into.
To determine if stopping hormone replacement is right for you, you should work with your doctor to find the weaning timeline that would be most appropriate, which depends not only on the type of HRT, but also other factors like what other medications you may be taking and how low-dose or high-dose your hormone therapy is.
Keep reading to learn more about what hormone replacement therapy is, who can help you with hormone replacement therapy, how to start hormone replacement therapy, how to stop hormone replacement therapy, and the side effects that can come along with stopping certain hormone replacement therapies.
Don’t Miss: How To Increase Melatonin Naturally
The 4 Hormone Replacement Therapy Side Effects To Consult Your Doctor About
When you begin taking a new medication, it is common to become acutely aware of unexpected changes in your body. After all, many medications have profound physiological effects that can cause everything from temporary discomfort to dangerous side effects. And despite the efforts of doctors and pharmacists to educate their patients on the side effects of drug therapies, its impossible to predict how a medication will interact with each persons body. As a result, patients are often left wondering whether their side effects are normal or cause for concern.
If youve recently started traditional hormone replacement therapy , experiencing side effects can be stressful, and it can be difficult to know when you should talk to your doctor. After all, most hormone replacement side effects like breast tenderness, acne, and nausea are typically harmless and often temporary. However, there are a few side effects both men and women taking HRT should consult their doctors about as soon as possible. There may also be ways to minimize your risk of experiencing these side effects by choosing safer formulations, dosages, and administration methods.
Side Effects Of Oestrogen
The main side effects of taking oestrogen include:
- swelling in other parts of the body
- feeling sick
These side effects will often pass after a few weeks. To ease side effects, try:
- taking your oestrogen dose with food, which may help feelings of sickness and indigestion
- eating a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet, which may reduce breast tenderness
- doing regular exercise and stretching, to help leg cramps
If side effects persist, your GP may recommend switching to a different way of taking oestrogen , changing the medicine you’re taking, or lowering your dose.
Don’t Miss: How To Stop Hormonal Imbalance Bleeding
Does Hrt Cause Weight Gain
Contrary to popular belief, HRT does not cause weight gain. Changes in weight are typically from menopause and other lifestyle factors. Any noticeable weight gain is usually just bloating and swelling.15
For some women, the benefits may outweigh these side effects. Talk to your doctor to see whats right for you. As always, dont be afraid to express any concerns or hesitations.
Hormone Therapy And Cardiovascular Disease
The incidence of cardiac disease is heightened in postmenopausal women. This finding has been linked to a causative pathogenic role of ovarian hormone deficiency.
When the concept of HT was initially introduced, it was believed that replacing ovarian hormones would reduce the observed increase in the risk of cardiovascular disease. However, this expected result has not been unequivocally demonstrated in various trials over the years.
The WHI study revealed an increased annual risk of heart attacks of 7 per 10,000 women who took combined therapy as opposed to women who took estrogen alone, in whom no significant difference was noted. Subsequent re-analysis showed similar results for breast cancer, demonstrating no increased risk in the fifth decade, though the risk rose with advancing age.
Two important clinical trials have been conducted to examine the relationship between cardiac disease and HT: the Postmenopausal Estrogen/Progestogen Interventions Trial and the Heart and Estrogen-Progestogen Replacement Study .
PEPI investigators looked at the effect of estrogen alone and combination therapies on bone mass and key risk factors for heart disease. They found generally positive results, including a reduction in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and an increase in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol by both types of therapy.
Don’t Miss: How Can I Balance My Hormones During Menopause
What Is Known About Hormone Therapy And The Risk Of Breast Cancer
Taking combined hormone therapy can increase your risk of developing breast cancer. Here are some important findings:
- Taking combination hormone therapy showed a rare increase of absolute risk of less than one additional case of breast cancer per 1000 person years of use.
- There was a nonsignificant reduction in breast cancer seen in women with hysterectomies on estrogen only therapy.
- If youve been diagnosed with breast cancer you should not take systemic hormone therapy.
Hormone Therapy For Breast Cancer
Some types of breast cancer are affected by hormones, like estrogen and progesterone. The breast cancer cells have receptors that attach to estrogen and progesterone, which helps them grow. Treatments that stop these hormones from attaching to these receptors are called hormone or endocrine therapy.
Hormone therapy can reach cancer cells almost anywhere in the body and not just in the breast. It’s recommended for women with tumors that are hormone receptor-positive. It does not help women whose tumors don’t have hormone receptors .
Read Also: What Is Hormone Treatment For Breast Cancer
What Are The Side Effects Of Hormone Therapy For Prostate Cancer
Because androgens affect many other organs besides the prostate, ADT can have a wide range of side effects , including:
- loss of interest in sex
Studer UE, Whelan P, Albrecht W, et al. Immediate or deferred androgen deprivation for patients with prostate cancer not suitable for local treatment with curative intent: European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Trial 30891. Journal of Clinical Oncology 2006 24:18681876.
Zelefsky MJ, Eastham JA, Sartor AO. Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer. In: Vincent T. DeVita J, Lawrence TS, Rosenberg SA, eds. DeVita, Hellman, and Rosenberg’s Cancer: Principles & Practice of Oncology, 9e. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins 2011.
Smith MR, Saad F, Chowdhury S, et al. Apalutamide and overall survival in prostate cancer. European Urology 2021 79:150158.
Does It Cause Weight Gain
Some people worry that hormone treatment might lead to weight gain, but there is no evidence to support this.
Eating a healthful diet and getting plenty of exercise can help manage the weight gain that commonly affects both females and males in midlife.
provide different combinations and amounts of hormones.Common types include:
Estrogen-only HRT: A doctor may recommend this if a person has had their uterus and ovaries removed, in which case progesterone is not necessary.
Cyclical, or sequential, HRT: This may be a good option if symptoms occur before menopause the dosage can align with the menstrual cycle.
Continuous HRT: After menopause, a doctor may prescribe a continuous combination of estrogen and progesterone.
Local estrogen: Vaginal tablets, creams, or rings can help with urogenital symptoms, including vaginal dryness and irritation.
The doctor will prescribe the lowest possible dosage that addresses the persons symptoms, and arriving at this dosage may take some trial and error.
Ways of delivering HRT include:
- vaginal rings
- skin patches
When a person no longer needs the treatment, the doctor will describe how to stop it gradually.
Various lifestyle adjustments can help manage the symptoms of menopause.
Also, it is a good idea to ask the doctor about nonhormonal treatment options.
Always speak to a doctor before using any supplements.
Read Also: How Do They Check Testosterone Levels
Possible Side Effects Of Ais
The most common side effects of AIs are:
- Hot flashes
- Bone and joint pain
- Muscle pain
AIs tend to have side effects different from tamoxifen. They don’t cause uterine cancers and very rarely cause blood clots. They can, however, cause muscle pain and joint stiffness and/or pain. The joint pain may be similar to a feeling of having arthritis in many different joints at one time. Options for treating this side effect include, stopping the AI and then switching to a different AI, taking a medicine called duloxetine , or routine exercise with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs . But the muscle and joint pain has led some women to stop treatment. If this happens, most doctors recommend using tamoxifen to complete 5 to 10 years of hormone treatment.
Because AIs drastically lower the estrogen level in women after menopause, they can also cause bone thinning, sometimes leading to osteoporosis and even fractures. If you are taking an AI, your bone density may be tested regularly and you may also be given bisphosphonates or denosumab , to strengthen your bones.
When To See A Doctor
Anyone experiencing symptoms of a hormonal change or imbalance should see a doctor as soon as possible. Early intervention may help prevent complications.
People should also see a doctor if their condition does not improve while taking a medication or herbal supplement, or if they experience side effects associated with these treatments.
Also Check: How Is Hormone Replacement Therapy Done