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Types of Hormone Replacement Therapy

HRT (Hormone replacement therapy, also referred to as hormone therapy, estrogen replacement therapy, or menopausal hormone therapy, is a treatment that uses the female hormones progesterone and estrogen to treat the symptoms of aging and menopause. Often, doctors prescribe it during or after menopause.

After your periods have stopped, the level of your hormones decreases, causing uncomfortable symptoms like hot flashes and vaginal dryness, and sometimes conditions like osteoporosis. Hormone replacement therapy re[laces hormones your body no longer produces. It is the most effective treatment for menopause symptoms.

The Importance of Estrogen
When you think of estrogen, most likely you think about pregnancy. In women who are in the age of childbearing, estrogen helps the uterus to get ready to receive the fertilized egg. Estrogen also has other roles, like controlling how your body uses calcium, which strengthens bones and raises the level of good cholesterol in the blood.

When Should You Take Progesterone
If you still have your uterus, using estrogen alone without progesterone raises your risk for cancer of endometrium, the uterus lining . Since the cells from the endometrium are not leaving the body anymore during your periods; they may build up in your uterus and cause cancer. Progesterone lowers this risk by thickening the lining.

Types of HRT
Estrogen Therapy: Doctors suggest a low dose of estrogen for women who have undergone hysterectomy. Estrogen is presented in different forms, but the most popular ones are the pill and the patch, but there is still the vaginal ring, spray or gel.

Estrogen/Progesterone/Progestin Therapy
Also referred to like the combination therapy since it combines doses of estrogen and the synthetic form of progesterone, progestin. It is meant for women who still have their uterus.

Women who have acute to severe menopausal symptoms, as well as those with a family history of osteoporosis, are ideal candidates for hormone replacement therapy.On the other hand, women that have breast cancer, heart disease, liver disease, or a history of blood clots as well as those without the menopausal symptoms should not go to the hormone replacement therapy.

Hormone Replacement Therapy Regimes
There are various treatment regimes of HRT available depending on whether you are still in the early stages of the menopause or have had menopausal symptoms for some time. The common regimes are the Cyclical or Sequential and the Continuous HRT.

The Cyclical HRT is recommended for women taking the combined Hormone replacement therapy who have menopausal symptoms but have their periods. Cyclical HRT is of two types; the Monthly HRT for women with regular periods and the three-monthly HRT for irregular periods.

Continuous combined HRT is for women who are post-menopausal meaning that they haven’t had their period for a year. It involves taking estrogen and progesterone every day without a break.

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