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What is menopausal hormone therapy?

  • During menopause the ovaries produce less of the estrogen hormone. This decline can be as much as 90%, causing unpleasant symptoms. Therefore different forms of estrogen are given to help alleviate these menopausal symptoms.  
  • Note that women with a uterus are given Progestin along with Estrogen to prevent their symptoms. The reason for this is that estrogen by itself can cause a uterine lining to grow abnormally, and therefore increase the risk of uterine cancer. The addition of Progestin, a progesterone-like hormone, prevents this from happening. Women without a uterus however cannot develop uterine cancer and do not require Progestin. 

 

What are the risks and benefits of menopausal hormone therapy?

  • Taking a combination of estrogen and progestin increases the risk of heart attack, breast cancer, blood clots and strokes in older postmenopausal women.  Taking estrogen alone causes a smaller increase in the risk of stroke and blood clots, but does not increase the risk of heart attacks or breast cancer.  With careful and throrough discussion, Dr. Somi Javaid will help you weigh the risks and benefits of menopausal hormone therapy and provide you the highest quality medical care.

 

Am I a good candidate for menopausal hormone therapy?

  • There are many types of tests for measuring estrogen and progesterone levels in the body. These tests are performed initially to get a baseline picture of your current hormone health. After a treatment program is tailored for your specific goals and hormone needs you will be tested again to get an accurate assessment of how well the program is working for you.  This additional testing provides an opportunity to further refine your treatment for optimal individualized results.

 

Who is not a good candidate for menopausal hormone therapy?

  • Hormone therapy is not currently recommended for those with breast cancer or those with a past history of breast cancer.
  • People with coronary heart disease should avoid hormonal therapy.
  • Anyone with previous blood clots, heart attacks, or strokes should also avoid hormone therapy.
  • Additionally, it is not recommended for anyone at high risk for these above conditions. If you fall into these categories than alternative, non-hormonal treatments should be explored to reduce bothersome menopausal symptoms. Information About Alternative Treatments