Hormone Replacement Therapy has some side effects. These side effects are negligible in comparison to the benefits it gives. Hence women should be encouraged to use ERT.
Hormone Replacement Therapy or HRT is used for dealing with the symptoms of menopause. These symptoms are caused due to the reduction in the levels of the estrogens hormone. This therapy is very useful for preventing disorder that result due to menopause in women. Let us take a look at the side effects of HRT.
Does HRT have side effects similar to those of birth control pills?
The use of HRT has been complicated for menopausal women as well as for prescribing doctors by the contraindications contained in the pharmaceutical data sheets. The similarity between the data sheets for oral contraception's and HRT’s preparations suggest that the contraindications for the former have been uncritically accepted for the latter. This has led to the wide spread misconception that oral contraceptive and HRT preparations are similar with regard to contraindications as well as risk for side effects. Since estrogens play such an essential role in the health and well being of women, women should be encouraged to use ERT so that they continue to enjoy the same quality of life they experienced before menopause.
Are there any drawbacks to HRT?
Some patients complain that oral drugs sometimes aggravate menopausal problems. This could be due to metabolism in the liver and the intestine, resulting in wide fluctuations in plasma hormone levels, changes in hepatic protein synthesis and perturbations of the haemostatic system.
What are the advantages of HRT?
Following are the benefits of undergoing HRT for menopausal women.
Reduces the risk of osteoporosis
Reduction in the level of estrogens results in weakening of the bones in menopausal women which results in bone disorder known as osteoporosis. Undergoing HRT for two years helps to restore the bone mass density in spine by 5 to 10% and reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
Decreases risk of cardiovascular diseases
HRT is known to reduce to risk of cardiovascular diseases by reducing the Low Density Lipoprotein cholesterol levels. It reduces the risk of diseases like stroke and heart attack.
Beneficial for diabetic women
It improves insulin sensitivity and elimination by affecting the metabolism between glucose and insulin.
Reduces other symptoms of menopause
HRT is beneficial for dealing with the other symptoms of menopause like depression, headache, irritability, anxiety, hot flushes, sadness, mood swings, sleep problems etc.
How is HRT done?
There are various ways through which HRT is administered. It can be administered orally, through vagina, through parenteral route, through rectum or topically. Therefore, these methods are distinguished in three type i.e.; oral, transdermal and percutaneous.
A woman can start HRT when she begins to experience the symptoms of menopause after consulting her doctor. The doctor will discuss the various modes of administering HRT with the menopausal woman after which she can choose the type of treatment based on her convenience. For the first three month your doctor will check if the therapy is working for you or not. After examining the effectiveness of the therapy, the doctor may consider making changes in the dosage of method in which the therapy is administered to you.
If you are considering HRT, it is important for you to note certain things. Women coping with high blood pressure cannot undergo this therapy. In this case the blood pressure needs to be controlled in order to undergo the therapy. Similarly, women with liver disease, previous history of blood clotting, womb cancer, ovarian cancer or breast cancer cannot opt for this therapy. In case of such complications, doctor may suggest alternative therapies to HRT. Otherwise, all women who are not coping with the above complications and who are experiencing the symptoms of menopause can opt for HRT.
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- The Indiaparenting Team