Link between Menopause and Hormone Replacement Therapy

snerfu By snerfu, 2nd Oct 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2j4iky8d/
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Women's Health

Menopause is the cause of worry for many women. Doctors advocate hormone replacement therapy as a treatment for this. One needs to understand the pros and cons well before starting the treatment.

Essentiality of hormone replacement therapy

Human body processes hormones on a daily basis. That is until a person goes through menopause. After this, production of hormone decreases or stops altogether in some cases. Hormone replacement therapy may be required for those who have trouble due to stoppage of hormone production inside their body.

We all need a corner to sit and soothe ourselves. This is especially true of those women who face menopause and its hardships. Here we see that it is not all that hard to face and that there are many things one could do to get peace and tranquility back into our lives.

Seeking best solution for menopause

Solution involves usage of Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Women who experience menopause have hot flashes and vaginal dryness. In recent past, people believed that replacing female hormones could relieve menopause symptoms, and related conditions such as heart disease and even dementia. However, recent studies have shown that HRT could have adverse effects on a patient's health. Therefore, be sure you understand everything pertinent about hormone replacement therapy before you make any decision.

HRT envisages supplementation of oestrogen alone or oestrogen in combination with progesterone during and after menopause. Normally, production of these hormones takes place in ovaries of woman. During menopause, ovaries stop or decrease production of these hormones leading to symptoms like vaginal dryness, itchiness of skin and hot flashes. Since each person is different, symptoms will vary and it is important to talk about hormone replacement therapy with your physician first before one begins this therapy.

Benefits of hormone replacement therapy are innumerable. Oestrogen maintains healthiness of vagina. It also helps to keep cholesterol levels in blood at healthy levels. Oestrogen has two other functions. First is that together with progesterone it prepares a uterus for implanting of an egg. Second it helps in metabolism of calcium in the human body.

Menopause takes place when one becomes old

For women who still have a uterus, replacement of oestrogen alone could prove to be dangerous. When a woman is in productive phases of life (before menopause), shedding of uterus lining takes place regularly. After menopause, this stops happening and if there is addition of extra lining of cells in the uterus, it could lead to cancer.

Progesterone helps the uterus shed its inner lining. The body disposes of shed cells through menstruation. When a woman experiences menopause, she stops menstruating. In such cases, HRT could prove beneficial, but one has to understand all risks first.

Understanding how hormones affect the human body

Hormones control many body functions and levels of neurotransmitters. Some of these neurotransmitters like Serotonin increase the happiness level in a person. Others like Norepinephrine increase the alertness level in the person. When a person is depressed, they give him Prozac since this helps increase the happiness level. This excitatory hormone oestrogen occurs due to the interaction of ovaries with fat cells. Norepinephrine at ideal levels produces a soothing effect. If the level is increased, the person becomes excited very easily. Progesterone is the next important hormone. It is a soothing hormone produced in the ovaries. It induces feelings of wellbeing.

Thyroid hormone

Hyperthyroidism: Increased level of thyroid hormone causes anxiety in the patient. Metabolism rate increases and one experiences rapid heart beat leading to panic attacks.

Hypothyroidism: Here the patient will experience rapid weight gain along with depression and slow thinking.

Patients suffering from either of these two cases should undergo HRT to regulate the hormone level.

Cortisol

Adrenal glands produce this vital hormone necessary for survival. Its functions include synthesis of energy and stress management. Trauma, infection or changes in physical or mental stress can produce adverse conditions that hinder proper body functioning. Insomnia, easy bruising, hypertension and stretch marks are symptoms of Cushing’s disease (name for this condition).

Menopause effect on women

During menopause, women have lowered levels of oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone. It creates sleep disturbances, hot flashes and vaginal dryness. HRT helps reduce these symptoms. However, the results vary with different patients.

Risks associated with HRT

There is an increased risk of occurrence of some serious medical conditions such as those listed below:
• Stroke
• Blood clots
• Heart disease
• Breast cancer
The case study of patients who took oestrogen-progesterone combination showed this result. For those consuming oestrogen alone, first two conditions remained affected but latter two namely heart disease and breast cancer seemed to be unaffected.

HRT is advisable in most cases

HRT is yet the best treatment for menopause. Mark this checklist and see if you have to undergo hormone replacement therapy or not. The benefits outweigh risks if a patient is healthy. It is also advised if the patient:
• Experiences hot flashes
• Has loss of bone mass
• Experienced premature menopause
• Had premature ovarian insufficiency

Negative side effects

The fact remains that the women with experience early menopause especially those who had removed their ovaries and do not take oestrogen therapy have a higher risk of:
• Dementia
• Earlier death
• Osteoporosis
• Coronary heart disease
• Parkinsonism
• Sexual function worries
• Depression

Positive effects

Early menopause reduces risk of many types of ovarian and breast cancer. Hormone therapy can lead to benefits instead of augmenting the risks. Talk to your physician and he or she will advise you about the right method of treatment and the right food to take. Food and health are intrinsically linked. Vaginal patch, cream or pill will work differently for different people. Your physician will study your symptoms and prescribe the right treatment. It is possible to improve health and vigour by including aphrodisiac food in one's diet. One has to seek the advise of the doctor first. One should also seek regular follow up.

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Tags

Hormone, Hormone Replacement Therapy, Hrt, Menopause, Oestrogen, Patient, Symptoms, Vagina

Meet the author

author avatar snerfu
Bachelor, Christian, 53, settled in Madurai, India, like to watch football and tennis on TV. I also have occasional walks but try to read the Bible daily. For amusement, I read the newspaper.

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Comments

author avatar Sherri Granato
2nd Oct 2014 (#)

So far, knock on wood, I am as good as gold through this life changing process.

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author avatar snerfu
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

It is not as bad as it seems Sherri. People who are not aware of the possibility sometimes remain confused for some time when they are not able to identify what is happening.

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author avatar Retired
2nd Oct 2014 (#)

Informative and well researched. I am in the situation of having both adrenal fatigue and Peri-menipause--and had been treating it naturally for the past year with small improvements. However, Amma's sankalpa removed 80% of my symptoms overnight. :)

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author avatar snerfu
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

Ayurveda has wonderful cures for almost everything under the sun. Both my parents were addicts of lehiyams and lotions from Kottakal Ayurveda Sala. I have not started any yet.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
2nd Oct 2014 (#)

Very good information snerfu...

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author avatar snerfu
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

Very much indebted Ms Powers.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

Very informative. I wanted to say something snarky about your writing about a woman's health and medical issues, but you did such a good job that I can't. So good job. ;)

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author avatar snerfu
3rd Oct 2014 (#)

No Phyl, I enjoy all comments, the "snarkier" the better. It is in debate that most issues are resolved, preferably when the writer is a "noncombatant", I think. You might need an outsider's point of view to get a better perspective of how things actually stand.I maybe wrong.

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author avatar Kingwell
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Good information. Blessings.

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author avatar snerfu
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Much thanks Kingwell.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
5th Oct 2014 (#)

I had Hyperthyroidism and underwent surgery to remove part of the gland - after five years, symptoms resurfaced and surgery was ruled out - took radio active iodine and then relapsed to Hypo and now on daily medication. I can feel hormonal imbalance, but Wikinut keeps me on my toes and well balanced. I endorse Phyl's comments though, but I know your subjects are beyond gender and other artificial man-made, including woman-made, barriers! No wonder women are able to handle better the stresses of daily life as they go through more in life in terms of demands on their body. I salute them - siva

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author avatar snerfu
5th Oct 2014 (#)

Understanding problems does not come from personal experience alone. If you read about it, you know what the other person is trying to tell you. Almost all women face menopause and while reading about it I decided to write about it.

About thyroidism (hyper and hypo), I have read one or two articles. My mom too had mild forms of thyroidism and was always harping about Iodine. It causes mood swings and hunger swings is what I learnt. However, it is not life threatening. You will live to die another day Siva.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
14th Oct 2014 (#)

Interesting post and one of a kind writing!

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author avatar snerfu
14th Oct 2014 (#)

Thanks Mr Mc Costigan.

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