Your Changing Body

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Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT)

What it is. What it is not. Why the drug companies don’t provide it. Why your doctor may not know about it. How a trained compounding pharmacist can help.

Definition: Menopause (climacteric): In. the time in a woman’s life when the ovaries cease to produce an egg cell every four weeks and therefore menstruation ceases and the woman is no longer able to bear children. The menopause can occur at any age between the middle thirties and the late fifties. Menstruation may decrease gradually in successive periods or the intervals between periods may lengthen; alternatively there may be a sudden and complete stoppage of the monthly periods. At the time of the menopause there is a change in the balance of sex hormones in the body, which sometimes leads to hot flushes, palpitations, and dryness of the mucous membrane lining the vagina.   

Some women may also experience emotional disturbances. These symptoms may be relieved by administering the appropriate estrogenic hormones (hormone replacement therapy). -menopausal adj.” Why is menopause an important topic? Is it only because of the “wave” of Baby Boomer women are reaching this time in their lives? Didn’t our grandmothers and great-grandmothers live through their menopause years to become wise, productive, caring and contributing members of society after menopause? What is the big deal? Is something different about menopause in the millennia?

Definition: Andropause (male climacteric, viropause, ADAM [Androgen Deficiency in the Aging Male] and PADAM [Partial Androgen Deficiency in the Aging Male]): In the span of time (may start in some men as early as age 35) in a man’s life when he ever so gradually experiences some or all of the following: a decline in energy, mood swings, indecision, depression, loss of drive, loss of muscle mass, memory loss, early fatigue, weight gain, slow healing, atheroschlerotic vascular changes, insulin resistance, prostatic hyperplasia, increased prostate cancer risk, bone loss and sexual interest and sexual vigor. Around this same time a man’s family life, social life, and work life is also changing. The kids may have gone off to college and a man may face much slimmer career opportunities. It is not a new phenomenon, we have more sophisticated tests to determine “free testosterone” in the blood and tissues (this is the only significant testosterone in a man’s body. Total testosterone, the old measurement, told us very little).  

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