Bio-identical (“natural”) hormones are prescribed hormones that are chemically identical to the hormones produced normally by our bodies. For this reason they are used and processed by the body the same way as a hormone our body produced itself. Synthetic hormones are not chemically identical hormones, and have been associated with cancer risk and other numerous health problems.
I prescribe thyroid, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, cortisol and other hormones to help bring the body back into balance. Some formulations are available in the clinic, while others are prescribed through compounding pharmacies.
In my practice I recommend prescription bio-identical hormones to address hormone imbalances that result from peri-menopause, menopause, biohandropause, thyroid imbalances and other ailments. Using hormone products safely requires that the physicians follow certain rules. Unlike many conventional practitioners, I typically test hormone levels before prescribing hormone supplementation.
Treating without testing can put patients in a worse place symptom-wise than they were before the hormones were given. Even though bio-identical hormones are considered much safer than synthetic hormones, I like to monitor my patients hormone levels with regular testing to make sure the natural hormones are producing the optimal hormone levels and that they are being broken down properly by the body and are not creating levels that are too high. Bio-identical hormone use is generally finite- I typically wean patients off prescriptions and balance hormones with other methods once symptom relief and stable health have been achieved.